DPB fraudster convicted: Not Turei though

fraud metiria turei

It has now been over one year since admitted fraudster Metiria Turei handed in her trough licence by resigning from the Crim Friendly Green Party.

Just how long does it take to get justice in this country?

Is there even an investigation underway? Or has one been secretly done and the results shoved under the carpet?

Has Metiria Turei ever paid back the money that she knowingly stole from the New Zealand tax payer?

Who would know, the enemedia have gone very quiet about her.

At least we have reports of one dodgy DPB crook getting her comeuppance.

Pauline Urana Lowen, convicted benefit fraudster.

According to a Stuff article, Pauline Urana Lowen, a 70-year-old retired hospital worker faces a $347,408 bill after 20 years of benefit fraud. Quote.

Pauline Urana Lowen pleaded guilty to five charges ? two of them are representative charges covering dozens of individual offences ? in court on Thursday.

Judge David Saunders remanded her on bail for sentencing on December 19, and asked for a pre-sentence report which will consider her suitability for home detention. end quote.

Ministry of Social Development prosecutor Jennifer North said that in 1984, Lowen was granted a domestic purposes benefit after the birth of her son. She received this until July 2003 when she applied for an invalid’s benefit, citing a lower back injury as the reason she was unable to work.

In February 2013, she became eligible for superannuation and applied for this as a single person living alone.

She was required to tell the Ministry of Social Development of any change in her circumstances that might affect her entitlement, or the rate of benefit. This included a change in her work situation, or financial circumstances, or her relationship situation. End of quote.

Remind you of anyone? Quote.

Inquiries started as a result of information MSD received.

That established she began living in a marriage-type relationship in August 1997, and married her partner on December 26, 1997. The couple had lived together continuously since this time.

Lowen did not tell MSD of the relationship. Her partner was employed and she was not entitled to a single rate of benefit.

She began work for the Canterbury District Health Board in 2008. She was not detected by data matching by the Inland Revenue Department because she was working under a different IRD number that she used for benefit purposes. She also used a different birthdate.

Lowen submitted forms to MSD stating that she was not working and unable to work, and continued to receive a single rate of invalid’s benefit.

She submitted 49 forms to MSD over 20 years that contained false details about her relationship status, her work, and her income and assets. End quote.

See this is the thing when you are claiming tax payers money, you have to fill out forms, lots of them if you want to keep getting it.

How many forms has Turei filled in over the years that contained false statements? Surely that shouldn’t be too hard to find out. quote.

[Lowen] also sent two letters about rental property arrangements which enabled her to receive supplementary assistance.End quote.

Again, this sounds like the same thing Turei did. I wonder if they are related to each other? Certainly a very similar modus operandi. Quote.

The main overpayments over the 20-year period were $113,524 for the invalid’s benefit, $68,454 for the accommodation supplement, and $61,207 for the domestic purposes benefit. End quote.

So substantial amounts then, but at least Lowen is starting to pay the stolen money back. Quote.

North said Lowen made seven repayments from her superannuation of $100 a fortnight.

“At this current rate of repayment, she would have paid this debt off by 2150.” End quote.

Good on the Police for taking a hard line with this crook. It looks like they are trying to seize her home. Quote.

Defence counsel Richard Maze said the Commissioner of Police had sought a restraining order in civil forfeiture proceedings to freeze all of her assets.

He asked for the sentencing to be delayed until December so that forfeiture action could be decided. He said she should be allowed to dispose of the property so that she could offer a substantial reparation payment at the sentencing. End quote.

I doubt it’s a castle but as far as I am concerned, if you deliberately defraud the people of New Zealand, over multiple years, you should lose your house to pay it back if necessary.

So come on Ministry of Social Development, how about an update??The humble tax-payers of New Zealand would like to know.

How is the investigation going? Has Turei been asked to pay back what she stole yet? Exactly how much did she steal from us? Is she going to be charged?

If it’s good enough for a pensioner to have her assets seized to pay for her deliberate theft, surely it is not too much to expect the same of a high profile member of parliament.

The fraud is the same, let’s see some action, please.

Oh, how I wish we could see Turei with a bracelet around her ankle!

One can only wish.
Digital image, credit Rick H

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