49 year old Nigerian woman jailed in UK over £114K benefits fraud
London, Dec. 21, 2019 (AltAfrica)-A Nigerian convicted of benefits fraud Olusola Owoeye will spend the next two years in jail in the UK after being found guilty of falsely claiming over £114,000 after saying she was homeless while renting out her own house.
Forty-nine year-old Owoeye, a mother of three, bought her own home before claiming she had been made homeless and was then given a flat by her local council, a court heard.
She then rented out her original property – which she had purchased with a fraudulent mortgage – charging tenants up to £820 a month.
Owoeye, is thought to be the first person in London to be convicted of benefits fraud after receiving payments while under ‘no recourse to public funds’ (NRPF) immigration status. She pocketed more than £114,000 over five years.
An immigrant with this status cannot access the mainstream benefits system, homelessness assistance from a local authority or social housing.
But they can get other publicly-funded services and would not be breaching their immigration conditions if they receive these.
She may have to sell her home to pay back money to Bexley Council in south-east London, the Mail Online reported on Saturday.
She was found guilty of three charges of fraud following a four-day trial at Woolwich Crown Court last month.
She was subsequently jailed for two years by Judge Jonathan Mann QC, who told her: ‘There is only one reason you did what you did and this is because you are greedy. For you this was money for nothing.