Landlord falsely claimed £15,000 benefits

Private landlord Craig McParlan fraudulently claimed nearly £15,000 of benefits while failing to declare he owned and managed rental properties in the UK and Spain.

Magistrates at Sefton, Bootle, heard he was a director of a property management company with six flats in Crosby, Merseyside and another on the Mediterranean holiday isle of Majorca.

McParlan, 50, also failed to disclose seven bank accounts while making the false benefit claims.

Prosecuting, Sue Cain, explained the fraud started in September, 2008, when McParlan began claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance.

He went on to claim housing and council tax benefits in January, 2010.

Ms Cain said: “The claim was made on the basis he had no discernible capital and Jobseekers’ Allowance was his only form of income.

“The applicant signed a declaration that this information was complete.

“In November, 2010, information was received which led the council to believe that McParlan not only had an alternative property in Spain, but that he was also part-owner with his parents of six flats in Crosby, one of which was the flat he lived in.

“When he was interviewed, McParlan said he did have an apartment in Spain registered in his name but that he was not the owner and it belonged to his father. These matters were dishonest from the outset.

“He owned the property in Spain and had an interest in the apartment block where he was living along with the additional bank accounts.”

Sentencing was adjourned until November 22.

Landlords in Waltham Forest, East London may need a house in multiple occupation licence before letting new shared houses.

The council says more than 1,100 properties have been registered to its voluntary accreditation scheme, which was launched last year, but many more are still not part of the scheme.

The move follows three landlords fined at Bow Magistrates Court for failing to comply with enforcement notices served by Waltham Forest Council.

Munir Hussain was fined £2,000 for fitting an unauthorised dormer window, Mei Yun Wu was ordered to pay £1,500 for an unlawful extension to a property, and William Lao was fined £1,500 for another unauthorised extensions and the erection of an outbuilding.

Find out more about landlord accreditation in Waltham Forest [LINK: http://www.walthamforest.gov.uk/pages/services/housing-landlords-accreditation-scheme.aspx ]

Tags: