Aylesbury woman gets 18-month suspended prison sentence in housing fraud case

She falsely claimed to be homeless to obtain benefits while renting out her accommodation

Thursday, 4th November 2021, 3:38 pm

An Aylesbury woman has been sentenced to a suspended prison sentence for falsely claiming benefits, following a successful prosecution by Buckinghamshire Council.

In December 2016, Bridget Gyaaba of Tring Road, Aylesbury, made an online homeless and social housing application to Aylesbury Vale District Council, dishonestly claiming to be homeless and in need of housing assistance, when in fact she held a social tenancy at an address in London.

She made the application intending to make a gain for herself or to cause loss to another. Meanwhile, she was informally renting her social tenancy in London.

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Woman successfully prosecuted by Buckinghamshire Council

Ms Gyaaba attended an interview under caution at Buckinghamshire Council in December 2020 and was later prosecuted at Aylesbury Crown Court after the Judge found her guilty and sentenced her on October 22, 2021 to:

> 18 months' imprisonment, suspended for 2 years

> 260 hours unpaid work

> 14 days rehabilitation activity requirement

> Contribution to costs of £1,500

> Statutory surcharge

> Sums to be paid within 3 months or negotiated with the magistrates court.

Nick Naylor, Cabinet Member for Housing and Regulatory Services, said: “We are very pleased with the outcome of this case and hope that our action sends a very strong message that social housing fraud will not be tolerated by Buckinghamshire Council.

“We will continue to work closely with our partners to ensure our social housing stock is only occupied by those in legitimate need.”

To report someone for suspected fraud, email to [email protected] or call the Fraud Hotline number on 01296 382237.