Jail for illegal immigrant living in Dagenham after £90,000 fraud

A Nigerian illegal immigrant who claimed about £90,000 in benefits has been jailed.

Ingrid Coipel, of Maplestead Road, Dagenham, was sentenced to 15 months on Thursday.

She had pleaded guilty at Snaresbrook Crown Court to nine counts of making a false statement, four counts of using a false instrument and a single count of being knowingly concerned in fraudulent activity.

Allowance

A fraud investigation found that the mother of two, who came to Britain on a false French passport in 2005, was claiming tax credits, housing benefits and council tax benefits between 2008 and 2012.

She also claimed jobseeker’s allowance between 2010 and 2012.

The investigation, led by Barking and Dagenham Council, was launched after Coipel was caught at the Olympic Park in Stratford in May 2012 and charged with possession of a false passport.

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For that offence the 38-year-old was sentenced to six months in prison suspended for 12 months.

A department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: “Benefit fraud is a crime and we are dedicated to catching those who commit it. “Only a small minority of benefit claimants are dishonest, but cases like this cost the taxpayer money that should be used to help those in need.”

If you suspect someone of benefit fraud, please call the Benefit Fraud Hotline on 0800 854 440.

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