Social care ‘Dodge City’ scam ‘fiddled’ two local councils out of £400k

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A couple have been jailed for a social care scam which involved fleecing over £400,000 from two local councils.

Dimitri Reeder was jailed for six years, while partner Claire Reeder was jailed for four years and nine months after they used their two social care employment agencies to “fiddle” invoices to claim £200,097 from Hull City Council and £204,952 from East Riding Council.

Together, they ran Proactive Health Partnership Ltd and Angels Careforce Ltd, where they charged the council for an extortionate amount of staffing hours that were never actually worked, Hull Live reports.

James Gelsthorpe, prosecuting, told Hull Crown Court this week: “The method was simple – they submitted invoices to Hull City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council for work which had not been done or for work that had already been billed.

“This deception was something in which they took a particular pride.”

They nicknamed the scheme “Dodge City” and, at one point, charged Hull City Council 1,111 per cent the normal rate – this amounted to £46,188 when it should have been just £3,812.

Mr Reeder, 52, denied two offences of fraud, and also denied false accounting – he was convicted for the fraud, but cleared of the false accounting charge.

His wife, who comes from a nursing background, pleaded guilty in May to two fraud offences.

Judge Mark Bury, when sentencing, did not hold back on the pair, calling the crimes “extremely serious”, yet not “a particularly sophisticated” fraud.

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He said: “The money that you were taking wrongly was for the most vulnerable in our society, adult social care – everyone knows how much value there is in that area.

“This fraud has the potential to make social care provision extremely difficult.”

Mitigator Stephen Robinson said that Mrs Reeder's friends were “surprised” that she was involved in such a scheme, and that she had “let herself down”, while her husband's representative, Patrick Palmer, offered no mitigation other than claiming that he had positive character references for him.

  • Money
  • Crime

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