Council cracking down on fraudsters

Nottinghamshire County Council
Nottinghamshire County Council

An ongoing campaign to tackle people and businesses attempting to defraud the public purse led to Nottinghamshire County Council uncovering £227,924 of attempted fraud in 2017-18.

The amount is similar to the £230,520 in attempted fraud identified during 2016-17 but remains significantly higher than the previous four years.

The most frequently attempted fraud against the council last year, related to ‘deprivation of assets’.

This is when someone deliberately reduces or hides their wealth – such as money, property or income – to increase the chances of the taxpayer funding the costs of their social care.

The council detected 91 deprivation of assets cases in 2017-18, worth £94,188.

Coun Bruce Laughton, chairman of the governance and ethics committee at the council, said: “It is well known that funding for local authorities has been reducing in recent years, while the demand for our services – particularly social care for children, older people and people with disabilities – continues to increase.

“So it’s more vital than ever that we do everything to protect the money we have available to direct at frontline services.

“The £230,000 of fraud is a tiny proportion of the £1 billion the council spends in providing services every year, but we will not be complacent.

“Every pound taken away fraudulently from providing important services is a pound too many and we will continue to take a zero tolerance stance against it.”

If you suspect an individual or business of fraud against the council, call the internal audit team on 0115 9772224.