Expat residents in Cyprus investigated for UK benefit fraud

Published:  11 Aug at 6 PM
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Following the revelation that a large number of expats all over the world are cheating on UK welfare payments, investigations are now involving over 100 Brits in Cyprus

It seems that UK expats living in the Mediterranean’s favourite lifestyle hubs are taking advantage of welfare benefits to which they are not entitled. According to the Department of Work and Pensions, benefit fraud is costing the UK some £82 million every year.

The latest expat destination to be investigated is Cyprus, with 126 Britons now being asked embarrassing questions by government officials. Set against the stunning total in 2013 of 7,296 offenders in 157 countries across the world including Spain, Turkey, India and Pakistan, the Cypriot welfare cheats might seem like a drop in the ocean, but are having to admit their crimes.

Most of the guilty parties on the holiday island were discovered through tip-offs from fellow expatriates, possibly exploding the myth of the friendly, welcoming expat community. According to the Department of Work and Pensions, the guilty will be forced to repay the money they’ve fraudulently claimed, and may also be fined and subject to jail time by the courts as well as seizure of any UK property or other assets.
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