78-year-old conman faces prison over £60k benefit fraud

Blackpool Magistrates' Court
Blackpool Magistrates' Court
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A 78-year-old man has admitted benefit fraud amounting to almost £60,000.

Harold Barker, of Ascot Road, Layton, admitted 10 offences of cheating the Department of Work and Pensions out of Credit and Income Support when he appeared before Blackpool magistrates.

It was his first appearance at court in connection with the charges, which date back to 1998 - the year he first qualified for his old age pension.

The court heard that Barker made a series of false declarations in official forms and phone calls to the DWP and kept secret the fact his wife was working.

Pam Smith, prosecuting, said that just under £60,000 was involved and asked for Barker to be sentenced at Preston Crown Court stating that he was facing at least 15 months jail.

Magistrates agreed to send the case to the higher court where Barker will appear on September 30.

He was given bail by the magistrates.