Tayside and Central Scotland

Garry Kenneth's partner Charlene Buist sentenced for benefit fraud

Charlene Buist
Image caption Buist was ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work in the next year

The partner of a Scotland footballer has been placed on a community payback order after admitting fraudulently claiming more than £13,000 in benefits.

Charlene Buist, 26, said she was single to claim working and child tax credits, income support, housing benefit and council tax benefit.

However, she was living with Dundee United defender Garry Kenneth at the time. He now plays for Bristol Rovers.

Buist was ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work in the next year.

Passing sentence at Dundee Sheriff Court, Sheriff Kenneth McGowan told her: "There are no direct victims in this type of crime - but these offences do have a significant impact on the public purse.

"The amount involved puts you at risk of a custodial sentence, but given that you are working and have a child to care for I'm persuaded that the matter can be dealt with by an alternative to custody."

Buist, who now lives in Bristol, admitted three charges of benefit fraud totalling £13,652.87.

The offences came to light after benefits bosses received an anonymous tip-off in December 2011.

The court earlier heard that Buist had been in a relationship with Kenneth while claiming benefits, and had access to the bank account into which his salary was paid.

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