Carol Edwards (aka Boardman), 58, of Cotswold Road, appeared at Warrington Magistrates Court on Wednesday 15 February and pleaded guilty to a charge of council tax support fraud.

Between 30 March 2015 and 3 February 2022, Mrs Edwards (Boardman) dishonestly failed to declare to the council that she was cohabiting with her husband Alan Edwards, a change in circumstances that she knew would affect her council tax support.

Mrs Edwards (Boardman) claimed £6,557.21 in fraudulent council tax support.

The magistrates stated that this was a deliberate and sustained fraud and the court sentenced Mrs Edwards (Boardman) to a 12 week community order, with electronic curfew requirement from 3pm until 12.59am.

She was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £60 and legal costs of £1,000.

Cllr Cathy Mitchell, deputy leader and cabinet member for corporate resources, said: “Council tax support is for residents who really need it, and we have a dedicated team of investigators who are committed to protecting public money from fraud.

“Our team will investigate allegations of benefit fraud and prosecute offenders, so you must let us know if you have recently made a change to your living situation, which could result in the need to review the amount of council tax support you are entitled to.”

For more information about council tax and the council tax support scheme, visit our council tax page.