Fraudster entitled to more than she fiddled.

Posted: February 5, 2010 in Law & Disorder

A fraudster swindled over £29,000 in benefits – but she could have legally claimed more in working tax credits.Ilie

Erika Hasler, 44, claimed she was a jobless single mum as she was given £29,581 in income support, housing and council tax benefits for seven years.

Hasler used different names as she got work as an auxiliary nurse and a parcel courier. She was caught because she used the same national insurance number.

Twice-divorced Hasler, of Kempton Road, Burnage, admitted dishonestly failing to notify the Department of Works and Pensions of changes in her circumstances.

Handing her a suspended 24-week jail sentence and an order to do 100 hours unpaid work, the Recorder of Manchester, Judge Andrew Gilbart, told her: “It’s been accepted that had you applied properly for tax credits you would actually have received over £30,000, above the amount you were getting to which you were not entitled.”

Hasler worked as an auxiliary nurse for East Cheshire NHS Trust at Macclesfield District General Hospital on and off for a total of six years. She earned up to £1,181 each month as a nurse and also £373-a-month as a parcel courier for nine months.

But she failed to declare her jobs to the DPW. She married in May, 2000 and investigators believe they lived together for five years. The relationship ended and another man moved in, said prosecutor Will Beardmore .

She failed to inform the DWP of either relationship or of savings of up to £8,000 she had in the bank, he said. She also enjoyed trips to Greece and Hungary – the latter to visit relatives. Hasler applied for her jobs in the names Erika Petra, Erika Keenan and Petra Keenan. She also applied for benefits under the name Erika Yoksha.

The DWP will now mount a civil case against Hasler to recover £46,380 in benefit paid to her between 1998 and 2008.

Because the law of dishonestly failing to notify the DWP of changes in circumstances was only introduced in 2001, Hasler could only be prosecuted over the £29,581 she claimed since that year.

Erika Petra, relatives in Greece and Hungary? “Fe fi fo fum I smell the blood of an immigrant”!

Talking about immigrant criminals.

A Romanian gang robbed banks and customers of cash after setting up sophisticated equipment at cash machines.

IlieThe three Romanians installed false fascias to ATMs in the south east and even disguised mobile phones to record card details in the “livery” of banks targeted.

A judge heard it was impossible to estimate the amount stolen by Colin Claudiu, Georgeta Neferu and her boyfriend David Moldovan, who were jailed after admitting conspiracy to steal and possessing articles for use in fraud. Moldovan, 49, was sentenced to four years, Neferu, 27, to three years and Claudiu, 24, to two-and-a-half years.

Maidstone Crown Court heard when police raided Moldovan and Neferu’s home in East Ham, east London, they found a “small factory” producing the equipment used.

Anthony Prosser, prosecuting, said the method used was simple. Guided by satellite navigation and armed with postcodes of banks they travelled all over the south east. A false fascia was placed over the card slots of ATMs to fool unsuspecting customers.

“In order to record the PIN, the conspirators had adapted and painted small mobile phone cameras they would attach above the keypad,” said Mr Prosser.

The card was swallowed up and once the holder had left, gang members would return and remove it along with the fascia. The card would then be used at other ATMs to withdraw the maximum amount of cash allowed.

Mr Prosser said Claudiu, Neferu and Moldovan were arrested on October 16 last year after CCTV camera operators saw them acting suspiciously at Barclay’s Bank in Tonbridge. After Moldovan pulled something from the top of the ATM, they moved to a lay-by near the Nat West branch in Castle Street. Neferu was found to have a list of 26 postcodes for mainly Barclay’s branches around the south east, including Tonbridge, Sevenoaks and Maidstone.

IlieClaudiu, Neferu and Moldovan, can not be deported as they are citizens of the European Union- welcome to the lunatic asylum called Britain!


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