A man who pretended to have been terminally ill with cancer in order to gain a larger four-bedroom home is among the cases of fraud and corruption tackled by a Suffolk council. 

The former tenant attempted to trick Babergh District Council into providing a larger home and work his way up the housing list. 

However, officers uncovered a letter purporting to be from a doctor was in fact false. 

East Anglian Daily Times: Suffolk Magistrates' Court in IpswichSuffolk Magistrates' Court in Ipswich (Image: Newsquest)

Appearing at Suffolk Magistrates' Court in November, the man pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation under the Fraud Act 2006. 

He was sentenced to 17 weeks behind bars, suspected for two years, 200 hours of community services and ordered to pay £1,928.50 in compensation.

The cases was unveiled in the Babergh and Mid Suffolk's annual 'Managing the risk of Fraud and Corruption' report.

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The report shows how both councils were recognised for their work on reducing fraud and error in housing benefit payments.

Documents show its councils' Shared Revenues Partnership identified a combined 99 cases of overpayment between February and December 2023, totalling £13,900.

Babergh District Council acting leader, Cllr John Ward, said: “People may think they are cheating the system, but they are actually cheating the taxpayers – trying to gain an unfair advantage over friends, neighbours and colleagues.  We have a duty to tackle fraud and corruption – and to ensure that we also hold ourselves up to the highest possible standards.”

Mid Suffolk District Council leader Cllr Andy Mellen said: “It’s important that our residents and communities can trust us, not only as the custodians of public funds, but also as individuals who feel passionately about protecting our districts and the quality of services that we provide.”

The report is due before the councils’ Joint Audit and Standards Committee on Monday, March 25.