Tue, 21 Dec 2010
A DJ from Birmingham who fraudulently claimed more than £18,000 in benefits while working for the BBC's Asian Network has walked free from court.
Lubna Qazi, who had faced a jail term of up to three months, was given a conditional discharge after being told her case was exceptional because of her care for her severely disabled husband. Birmingham Crown Court heard that Qazi, 53, began to claim carer's allowance after her husband suffered a stroke in 2002.
But she then failed to declare that she was receiving an income in excess of the permitted £95-per-week limit while claiming the benefit for almost seven years.
Passing sentence, Recorder Collingwood Thompson QC said benefit fraud was easy to commit and hard to detect. But the judge told the broadcaster that he was taking an exceptional course because of the "devoted" care and attention she had given her husband.
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