The Croydon Advertiser has reported that seven people have appeared in court accused of conspiring to fraudulently claim money from the government’s Access to Work fund.
Among them is the former boss of the Dering recruitment agency, Stephen Dering, who is profoundly deaf.
THE former boss of a specialist recruitment agency for deaf people has appeared in court accused of claiming expenses of more than £200,000 for bogus sign language services.
Stephen Dering, 37, is alleged to have conspired with six other people to defraud the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).
Magistrates were told the offences relate to the Government’s Access to Work scheme, which helps people with disabilities to find employment, stay in work or start a business.
Dering was the chief executive of Croydon-based Dering Employment Services until it went out of business in September 2010.
The prosecution’s case is that Dering – himself profoundly deaf – and others claimed expenses from the DWP when an interpreter was never used or, if they were, they were significantly cheaper than the amount claimed.
The court heard that £1 million of Access to Work grants were paid through Mr Dering’s companies. The prosecution alleges that in excess of £200,000 worth of claims were fraudulent.
The seven accused were all granted unconditional bail and will now attend a preliminary hearing on September 24th.
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