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Defra worker handed £5,000 payout

A Government worker received £5,000 compensation for injuries suffered "by l ifting files and boxes" after submitting a claim for £50,000 , figures have shown.

The employee in the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) also received costs along with the damages payout, according to information released under Freedom of Information (FOI) laws.

Seven workers who received compensation from the department totalling more than £107,000 in a two-year period were listed by the department.

Cases included £1,300 paid to a staff member for "loss of a car lease agreement", £40,415 plus £420 costs for a severance payment on "health and attendance issues" and £12,500 following "unfair dismissal".

A worker also received £21,000 as "three months' salary severance payment paid in lieu of notice".

Details of a claim of £20,000 in February 2011 for a severance payment are unknown, including the amount paid out, the FOI added.

The information related to claims made from 2011 to 2013.

The FOI was published on the Government's www.gov.uk website.

Jonathan Isaby, chief executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said: "Some of these payouts are ridiculous.

"Either Defra isn't looking after its staff properly or they're paying out on spurious claims too easily.

"Regardless, it's the taxpayer that ends up footing the bill."

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