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Benefit fraud lottery winner jailed

A convicted rapist who won nearly £5 million on the lottery but continued to fraudulently claim benefits has been jailed for nine months.

Edward Putman, 46, who was convicted of rape in 1993, won the life-changing sum in September 2009.

But he continued applying for housing benefit and income support and even wrote to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and his local council claiming he was broke and could not even afford to eat.

In reality he was splashing out on two sports cars and a new house.

H e was jailed by Judge Andrew Bright QC after admitting two counts of benefit fraud at St Albans Crown Court.

The judge described Putman's fraudulent claims as "a pack of lies from start to finish" and said his letters to the authorities were "as calculated a piece of deception as anyone could imagine".

The judge told Putman he was "motivated by sheer greed" and continued to claim despite winning millions.

"It was greed on a scale which, frankly, defies belief, especially in an economic climate when welfare budgets are being cut and those who are properly entitled are struggling to make ends meet."

Judge Bright said Putman's fraudulent claims, which spanned 20 months, were so serious and his "culpability so grave" that Sentencing Guidelines Council advice about punishment has "little application to a case like this".


From Belfast Telegraph