A woman who said she could barely walk has been exposed as a benefits cheat – after she was caught going to the GYM.
Donna Prior, 49, pocketed more than £15,000 in handouts after claiming she needed help getting dressed, washing and climbing in and out of bed.
But investigators filmed her climbing steps, carrying bags of shopping and going to the gym for swimming and keep-fit classes.
Magistrates in Plymouth, Devon, found Prior guilty of two offences of dishonestly claiming disability money and making a false statement to obtain unemployment benefits.
She was spared jail but ordered to wear an electronic tag – although she won’t have to wear it for two weeks because of a holiday.
JPs heard that Prior had legitimately received disability benefit in 2011 because of a serious back problem but kept claiming the money in 2012 despite her condition improving.
She also claimed she was unemployed but investigators found pay slips and other information to prove she had a part-time job.
The court heard she joined a gym in September 2011 where she swam and took part in classes. She was also seen walking her dog each day.
Prior, representing herself, said: “I am sorry that this has happened because my disabilities are getting worse.
“I’m due to have an operation on my toes because of arthritis and I may be having another operation on my back.”
Prior, of Plymouth, was given a 12-week suspended prison sentence and ordered to pay #620 costs and an #80 victim surcharge.
She was also slapped with a curfew and an electronic tag for eight weeks but won’t have to wear it from September 21 to October 1, when she’s on a pre-booked holiday.
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