Beds, Herts & Bucks

Lottery winner Edward Putman jailed for benefit fraud

Edward Putman leaving court
Image caption Putman was convicted of rape in 1993

A man who won nearly £5m on the lottery who went on to fraudulently claim about £13,000 in benefits has been jailed.

Edward Putman, 47, of Kings Langley, Hertfordshire, was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court to nine months after admitting two counts of benefit fraud.

He continued applying for housing benefit and income support after his win in September 2009, the court heard.

Judge Andrew Bright QC described Putman's fraudulent claims as "a pack of lies from start to finish".

'Sheer greed'

The court heard that Putman, of Station Road - who was convicted of rape in 1993 - began receiving income support in 2000 on the basis of his being incapacitated by anxiety issues.

When he failed to attend a medical check-up in 2009, his benefits were suspended, before being officially ended in April the following year.

In July 2010, 10 months after being made a millionaire by his lottery win, he wrote to the Department of Work and Pensions asking for his benefits to be reinstated.

While claiming benefits, Putman was spending money on two sports cars and a new house.

Sentencing Putman, Judge Bright 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".

"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," the judge said.

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