EXCLUSIVE: Shameful scrounger Smith boasts she won’t have to pay back a penny

Andrea Smith. Picture by Rebecca Havercroft.
Andrea Smith. Picture by Rebecca Havercroft.

Benefits scrounger Andrea Smith has boasted she won’t pay back the money she conned out of taxpayers’ pockets.

Smith, 40, of New Bolsover, wept in the dock on Tuesday as she was sentenced for illegally claiming £88,000 over a nine-year period.

But in a Facebook post seen by the Derbyshire Times, shameful Smith – who narrowly avoided a jail sentence – boasts: “I haven’t got to pay the money back.”

However, Bolsover District Council has insisted it will retrieve the cash.

A spokesman stressed: “The council will be proactive in reclaiming money owed to us.”

On our Facebook page, readers have slammed Smith.

Ann Stray fumed: “Disgusting. That’s all I can say.”

However, Smith’s daughter came to her defence, saying: “At least she admitted she did wrong and actually stepped up to take what was thrown at her in court.

“No one’s perfect – we all make mistakes.”

Smith wrongly claimed the “staggering” sum as a lone parent when in fact her employed husband had been living with her at her address, Derby Crown Court heard on Tuesday.

She had falsely claimed income support, housing benefit and council tax benefit and failed to declare her true circumstances between September 2003 and October 2012.

The court heard mum Smith, who has a disabled son, scammed the system as “money was always tight” in her household because her husband had a gambling addiction.

She wiped away tears as the judge, Recorder Marcus Tregilgas-Davey, blasted her “dishonesty” and sentenced her to a six-month jail sentence, suspended for two years, as well as 150 hours’ unpaid work.

He said: “Your dishonesty gives legitimate benefits claimants a bad name.

“You’ve come as close as you possibly could to finding yourself in prison.”