Derbyshire postman who fraudulently claimed £30,000 in disability benefits jailed after being caught delivering letters

Anthony Linaker was filmed by Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) investigators carrying out his rounds in Derbyshire
Anthony Linaker was filmed by Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) investigators carrying out his rounds in Derbyshire

A crooked postman who pocketed more than £30,000 in disability benefits has been jailed after being caught delivering letters on his five-hour rounds in Derbyshire.

Anthony Linaker, 46, claimed he was bed-ridden due to bad hips which left him struggling to dress himself, get out of his chair or even go to the toilet without help.

He claimed more than 30,000 in disability benefits

He claimed more than 30,000 in disability benefits

But a court heard how the benefits cheat had swindled a total of £33,087.55 in disability living allowance since 2012 while actively working as a postman.

Investigators from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) filmed him in September 2016 walking several miles a day with ease on his rounds in Glossop.

He had also uploaded pictures on Facebook showing him digging holes on a beach with his family and had a season ticket at Manchester City FC.

On Monday married dad-of-one Linaker, of Felixstowe in Suffolk, was jailed for six months at Derby Crown Court.

Sentencing, Judge Jonathan Bennett criticised the fraudster for his "downright lies" and told him "people who claim benefits are disparaged as scroungers."

Linaker had been claiming benefits from April 2009 to May 2017 due a long-standing condition with his hips and arthritis.

But following a partially successful hip replacement operation, he failed to notify the DWP in a change of his circumstances.

He continued to work for Royal Mail, driving around in a van and delivering letters as well as spending two-and-a-half hours bending down sorting letters.

Linakar, who has since lost his job, went on to plead guilty to two counts of dishonest representation for the obtaining of benefit, disability living allowance.

He apologised for his actions and said he had been suffering from stress as a result of his mother's death the previous year.

A DWP spokesman said afterwards: “Only a small minority of benefit claimants are dishonest, but cases like these show how we are catching the minority who cheat the system and divert taxpayers' money from those who need it.

“We are determined to catch those we suspect of fraudulently claiming benefits by following up on tip-offs, undertaking surveillance and working with local councils.”