LONDON:A British couple were jailed Friday for making fake holiday sickness claims in a case that authorities hope will the end the “explosion” of fake food poisoning cases.
Deborah Briton, 53, and partner Paul Roberts, 43, claimed they and their two children had fallen ill during holidays to Spain’s Majorca in 2015 and 2016.
Judge David Aubrey at Liverpool Crown Court ruled that the claims were a “complete and utter sham” as he sentenced Briton to nine months in jail, and Roberts to 15 months.
“You were both asserting on your behalfs and on behalf of your two children that on two separate holidays you had suffered illness. They were totally and utterly fake,” said the judge.
The couple, who tried to tried to claim nearly £20,000 ($26,600, 22,500 euros) in compensation, admitted four counts of fraud in the private prosecution brought by holiday firm Thomas Cook.
Judge Aubrey said he hoped the ruling would bring to an end the “explosion” in similar cases.
“Those who may be tempted in the future to make a dishonest claim in relation to fake holiday sickness, if they are investigated and brought to justice, whatever the circumstances of an individual, he or she must expect to receive an immediate custodial sentence,” he said. – APP