Millionaire Holloway pensioners face retrial over alleged £130k benefits scam
PUBLISHED: 16:34 09 December 2010 | UPDATED: 17:14 09 December 2010
AN elderly brother and sister accused of pocketing £130,000 in state handouts despite having a combined fortune of around £4 million are facing a retrial.
Shefali Scholefield, 67, allegedly played landlady while Raymond Martin pretended to be her tenant at the flat they jointly owned in Freegrove Road, Holloway, during the 15-year housing benefit scam.
The Indian-born siblings are both disabled and had been representing themselves at the trial which began last week at Blackfriars Crown Court heard.
But the jury was discharged after Scholefield suffered a fractured hip in a fall.
Following news of Scholefield’s accident, Judge Peter Clarke QC adjourned the case until August 8 next year.
The court had heard the pair were living together in the valuable Victorian conversion flat in Holloway when they started the scam in July 1991.
Scholefield also owned Coppers, a £3.5million four-bedroomed detatched house in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey, while the pair claimed £100,000 in Martin’s name, jurors were told.
The sister is also said to have falsely claimed another £30,000 of housing benefit for herself while purporting to live at another address she owned in Great Ormond Street near the famous children’s hospital.
The money was received from Camden and Islington councils until Scholefield’s ownership of the Kingston property came to light, the jury heard.
Martin and Scholefield, whose address is listed with the court as a correspondence address in Hornsey Park Road, Wood Green, jointly deny 14 counts of false accounting between July 17, 1991 and July 11, 2006.
Scholefield denies a further 14 like charges between December 7 1998 and February 11 2004.
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