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Somalia ‘winter fuel’ con

The Sun (UK)
Monday, July 8, 2013
By TOM WELLS

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SWINDLERS worldwide are milking the soft-touch UK for handouts like winter fuel allowance — even in baking hot SOMALIA, The Sun can reveal.

Fraudbusters have uncovered a string of bogus benefit claims from the war-torn African nation — infamous for its pirates.

The cons are among a scandalous £61million worth from far-flung countries uncovered in a blitz.

A whopping total of 4,000 bogus foreign benefit claims were halted, including 17 in Somalia, 306 in Pakistan, 35 in Iraq and 17 in Afghanistan.
The figures sparked outrage last night. Matthew Sinclair, leader of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, fumed: “It’s further proof that our benefits system needs a radical overhaul.

“We must crack down on those cheating the system and impose harsher sanctions.”

Spain remains the top country for crooks targeting our benefits system — with expats there ripping off the rest of us for handouts such as income support and disability living allowance to which they are not entitled.

The two-year crackdown uncovered 472 fraudulent claims in the country.

Further afield, 127 claims were probed from Thailand, 81 from Australia — and one from 7,800 miles away in the Falklands.

Fraudsters ordered to pay back the dosh totalled a paltry 192.

Last night a spokesman for Iain Duncan Smith’s Work and Pensions Department insisted: “Benefit cheats think once they are lying on the beach they are beyond the reach of our fraud investigators.

“We are ready to investigate from Spain to Somalia.”



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