Rob Dudley prosecutes dementia-faker who hid her father’s death for £750,000 benefit fraud

July 30, 2019

In a case prosecuted by Rob Dudley from Exchange Chambers, an amateur actress who feigned dementia and hid her father’s death for 12 years so she could claim £750,000 in public funds has been jailed for 70 months. In sentencing Judge Everett described her as being “breathtakingly dishonest”. This case is believed to be one of the largest benefit frauds ever to have been committed by a single individual.

When Ethel McGill’s father died in April 2004, she failed to notify any of the agencies paying benefits to him – enabling her to receive his various pensions and allowances.

The fraudster, 68, also faked dementia and mobility problems for more than two decades in order to falsely claim Disability Living Allowance and other benefits.

In 2005, she made a request to Liverpool Housing Trust for a bigger property in Runcorn, Cheshire – claiming her whole family needed to live together to provide around-the-clock care for the already deceased Robert Dennison.

McGill even asked someone to pretend to be her late father, telling social workers who were checking up on him not to speak with her ‘dad’ as he could become aggressive.

McGill was sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court today after admitting benefit fraud at a hearing on 27 June 2019.

She pleaded guilty to:

  • Two counts of conspiracy to commit fraud
  • Four counts of committing fraud by false representation
  • Four counts of dishonestly failing to notify a change in circumstances
  • One charge of false accounting
  • Three charges of money laundering in relation to the proceeds of the frauds

Her son, Chris McGill 28, pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation and received a two-year community order. Her other son’s partner, Hannah Bazley 25, pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to commit fraud by false representation and received an 18-month community order.

You can read more about the case on the CPS website. The case has also received coverage from the national press.