The government allegedly pays £100 billion annually in benefits. This is, needless to say, a gigantic amount. It begs the question: of that sum, how much is acquired fraudulently?
While at university reading an undergraduate degree, I lived in a run-down estate. There were many people who seemingly did nothing but mend their cars, chat endlessly and walk their innumerable children. I suspected that those people claimed benefits – unnecessarily.
I find the fraudulent acquisition of benefits most intolerable: hard-working people have to pay taxes only for lazy, selfish idiots to scrounge off them and give very little, if anything, in return.
I believe that more work ought to be done to ensure that those who do commit benefit fraud are detected, prosecuted and, if found guilty, punished accordingly.
Depending upon the individual circumstances and the gravity of the specific offence, a custodial sentence, a fine or a community punishment might well be warranted. Furthermore, a partial sentence, in the form of the repayment of benefits which were obtained fraudulently, might be in order.
What are your views on benefit fraud?