The battle against fraud in the UK continues – and now a strong message has been sent with one man jailed for his attempts at trickery.
Shaun Sturges brought a personal injury claim against Milton Keynes Council claiming that he had tripped over a defective drain cover, when in fact he had slipped on ice. He has now been jailed for eight months for contempt of court after the fraud came to light when examining his medical records.
He was almost not alone with his jail time, however. He was nearly joined by his daughter Danielle Sturges who had supported her father in his claim against the council. She has been sentenced to six months imprisonment, suspended for one year for her part in the fraud.
According to a release from law firm DWF, Shaun Sturges had signed court documents and a witness statement which he knew were not true and had lied to a medical expert about how the accident had happened. Danielle Sturges had also signed a witness statement which she also knew was not true.
Sentencing Shaun Sturges to an immediate prison sentence, after he had pleaded guilty to contempt, Her Honour Judge Coe QC said: “There is high public interest is preventing fraud. This is not a victimless crime and a strong deterrent is needed.”
The defendants were also ordered to pay the council’s costs of bringing the prosecution.
DWF Director, John Palmer, who acted for the council said: “This sentence sends a strong message to the would-be fraudster. Shaun Sturges was handed an eight month custodial sentence and was sent immediately to prison, even though he had pleaded guilty to being in contempt of court and had discontinued his original claim which was of modest value.”
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