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Page last updated at 10:08 GMT, Wednesday, 4 May 2011 11:08 UK

Council house conman confronted by Panorama

Panorama reporter Richard Bilton confronted a conman who was advertising to unlawfully buy council tenancies in London.

Their meeting followed an investigation in which an undercover Panorama reporter was offered cash by the man in exchange for a council tenancy.

The proposed scam involved the undercover reporter pretending to be in a fake relationship with a female associate of the conman so that the tenancy would eventually pass to her.

Along with unlawful subletting by council tenants who privately rent out their properties, this type of cheating the system is removing an estimated 50,000 council homes from the system in England alone at a time of severe shortages.

Panorama's Council Houses: Cheats and Victims, BBC One, Wednesday, 4 May at 2100BST and then available in the UK on the BBC iPlayer.

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