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TENA actress in £34,000 benefit fraud
SHE’S famous for her “oops” moment but nothing could save her from this embarrassment.
Southampton-based actress Donna Grant, who featured in a TENA incontinence pads advert, has been caught scamming taxpayers out of thousands of pounds of public money.
The 37-year-old, who now lives in the city, has been handed a suspended jail sentence for fraudulently claiming more than £30,000 in benefits after a council investigation uncovered her scam.
Haringey Council discovered that the actress, who also appeared in CBBC’s Young Dracula, had failed to tell the council or the Department for Work and Pensions of her income from her job, while living in the London borough before her move to Southampton.
Grant claimed £34,115 in housing benefit, council tax benefit and income support between July 2009 and July 2012 at her home in Primezone Mews, despite working as a freelance actress and model for a range of organisations including the BBC and ITV.
Her starring role in the Lights by TENA advert saw her dress get caught in a lift she was sharing with a handsome man, revealing her underwear.
But because she was wearing one of the brand’s incontinence pads, which are promoted as being so discreet they look and feel like normal underwear, her gentleman admirer did not spot that she was wearing them.
The commercial ends with her saying “oops” as she tells her friend about the unfortunate life saga.
But her blushes could not be saved in court after it was revealed a joint investigation by Haringey Council’s fraud team and the Department of Work and Pensions discovered her illegal claims.
She was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for 18 months, after pleading guilty to two charges of failing to notify authorities of a change in circumstances at Tottenham magistrates Court.
She was also ordered to do 80 hours of unpaid work, repay the illegally claimed money, and pay costs of £500.
Councillor Joe Goldberg, cabinet member for finance, said: “Benefit fraudsters should be aware that scamming taxpayers out of public money is one ‘oops moment’ we won’t forgive.
“Benefits are rightly there for those who need them most and we will always actively pursue people making fraudulent claims.”
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