Bury benefit cheat claimed partner only visited occasionally

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A Bury St Edmunds woman has been convicted of illegally claiming almost £20,000 in benefits.

Sonya Bunney, 27, of St Olaves Road, had denied two offences of failing to notify a change in her circumstances which would affect entitlement to benefits but a jury at Ipswich Crown Court found her guilty today.

The court heard that between March 2012 and March 2014 Bunney had been paid just under £20,000 in income support and housing and council tax benefits to which she was not entitled.

Prosecuting, Matthew Sorel-Cameron told the jury that for two years benefit officials thought Bunney was living alone with her children.

But investigators obtained evidence that Bunney’s partner Richard Jobson had been living with her when she was claiming to be a single parent and unable to work.

In court, Bunney denied she had misled officials to continue being paid. She said that while she and Mr Johnson did not live as a couple, he had, on occasions, visited to help look after her children.

Judge Martyn Levett told Bunney that she would continue to be granted bail until she returns to court to be sentenced next month.