CSA employee, Clair Jones, jailed for stealing money from parents
May 29, 2012
Anyone who has ever dealt with the Child Support Agency will not be in the least surprised by this latest story of deceit, fraud and theft from the CSA. Child Support Agency worker, Clair Jones, who is supposed to help parents with care receive money from non-resident parents for the upbringing of their children, has been jailed by Plymouth Crown Court for diverting money into her own bank account.
The woman, who has been stealing money from parents since 2009, was in a lot of financial hardship according to her solicitor, Alan Harris. She apparently owed money to loan sharks and was being threatened in order to pay it back. Rather than work out her problems or seek financial assistance, she decided the best course of action was to use her position to steal money from hardworking fathers and mothers, and then cover her tracks so nobody would know.
Over the course of the last few years, Clair Jones stole almost £7,000 from parents and sent the money instead to her own bank account, fabricating records so that her supervisors didn’t know what she had done. As any parent knows, complaining to the Child Support Agency is difficult at the best of times as they don’t answer complaints well, are rude on the phone and condescending via letter. They are known for being incompetent and make constant mistakes with calculations and even payments, sending money to the wrong accounts. This latest action just compounds the frustration and sense of injustice that loving parents feel, especially when you consider that Clair Jones has only been jailed for 12 weeks, and will probably serve half of that.
Her solicitor, Alan Harris, intends to appeal the decision and claims that Clair Jones fully intended to repay the money she had stolen.
The prosecuting solicitor, Owen Lawton, stated that Clair Jones has stolen a total of £6,847.60 and paid into a separate bank account that she owned. Her tracks were covered when she altered records to hide the payments.
Jones’ theft was only uncovered when a non-resident parent complained that he had not received a refund of £400 which he was expecting. That particular NRP is lucky they even bothered to investigate in the first place. Clair Jones’ fraud may have gone completely undetected.
Wendy Casper, the magistrate presiding over the case, commented:
“Only custody is justified because these offences were committed while you were in a position of trust. “
“They were committed over a long period of time and with a fair degree of sophistication. “
“They only stopped when you were caught.”
Clair Jones is herself a single parent, and decided to steal money from those who needed it most after her own child benefit had been stopped. She also apparently ‘had a problem with her car’. These are all the same kinds of problems parents talk about when they speak to the CSA, but are ignored. She was reportedly in tears as she was led away from the court to begin her 12 week sentence.
Please let us know below what you think of Clair Jones, and the 12 week sentence she has received for stealing from parents.