How photo helped catch benefits cheat who claimed she had crippling disability to take home £33k

A BENEFITS cheat who feigned a crippling disability has been busted – after being caught horseriding. 

Michelle Hanney, 51, swindled more than £33,000 after claiming she could barely walk and had to use a wheelchair to go outside.

Michelle Hanney, 51, swindled more than £33,000

The Rotherham fraudster was found out after posting pics on Facebook walking her horse

But the Rotherham fraudster was found out after posting pics on Facebook walking her horse and even getting onto the saddle.

She has been sentenced to a 12-month community order after pleading guilty to fraudulent activity between May 2021 and August 2022. 

The Department for Work and Pensions say she stole £33,711 in Personal Independence Payment and Universal Credit but was prosecuted on the lesser amount of £10,384. 



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Fraud Minister Tom Pursglove said: “The vast majority of disability benefit claims are correct, and we know the difference that these benefits can make to people.

“However, there is a small minority of people out to cheat the system.

“This conviction is another example of our relentless focus on finding those taking the taxpayer for a ride and bringing them to justice.”

Ministers have poured £900million over three years into fighting fraud.

Last month Welfare Secretary Mel Stride told the Sun: “If people are going to abuse our benefits system, we will catch up with them and we will deal with them.

“So the message is don’t do it, because we will find you. It’s as simple as that.”

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