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Mon 12 Aug 2013 10:06 AM

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UK in crackdown on expat benefit cheats

Those claiming bogus social welfare while living abroad are set to face trial and possible jail time - report

UK in crackdown on expat benefit cheats

The UK government is to crackdown on expats living abroad but still claiming millions of dollars in bogus benefit claims, it was reported.

New proposals proposed by the London government will see British police travel abroad to the main expatriate hotspots, where those claiming social welfare benefits but living it up in the sun abroad will be extradited back to the UK to face trial for fraud, and possible jail time, the Daily Mail reported.

The British government estimate around £79m ($122m) was illegally claimed in bogus benefit claims in 2011, the report found, with the money accessed abroad.

“Benefit cheats think once they are lying on the beach they are beyond our reach... But fraudulently claiming benefits while living abroad is a crime and we will investigate,” a Department for Work and Pensions spokesman was quoted as saying.