A HAIRDRESSER from Abingdon who claimed £4,600 in benefits she was not entitled to over more than four years has been fined.

Samantha Rowe, 27, of John Morris Road pleaded guilty at Oxford Magistrates’ Court on Monday to four charges relating to her claim of Council Tax Support, including fraudulently failing to disclose changes in her circumstances.

Magistrates heard how, between April 2014 and October 2018, she had claimed more than £4,600 that she was not entitled to. 

ALSO READ: Conman faked signatures on payslips as part of mortgage fraud

An anonymous tip-off revealed that Rowe had failed to declare that she was self-employed as a hairdresser, and that her husband had also changed jobs three times during this period.

In court, Magistrates took her early guilty plea into account, fining her £350 and ordering her to pay £130 costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

Robert Sharp, Cabinet member for finance at Vale of White Horse District Council, said: “If you are claiming Council Tax Support but are self-employed, or you experience a change of circumstance, then you must tell us immediately. 

ALSO READ: 'Headington Door Knocker' conman was given a second chance - but it didn't last long

"If you fail to do this, you may be committing fraud and you could face prosecution. Council Tax Support is wholly funded by local taxpayers, so claiming it fraudulently is effectively stealing from your neighbours."

Anyone who suspects someone is committing Council Tax Support fraud is asked to report it on 01235 422483 or by emailing fraud@southandvale.gov.uk.