Conman owes £452,417

PUBLISHED: 13:04 20 February 2008 | UPDATED: 09:44 27 October 2009

A PROLIFIC fraudster who milked the benefit system has got to pay back nearly half a million pounds - or face jail. Phillip Kole-Emmanuel was ordered by a crown court judge to surrender the assets he bought with the proceeds of his crimes. The 45-year-o

A PROLIFIC fraudster who "milked the benefit system" has got to pay back nearly half a million pounds - or face jail.

Phillip Kole-Emmanuel was ordered by a crown court judge to surrender the assets he bought with the proceeds of his crimes.

The 45-year-old went by various aliases to make false benefit claims to numerous councils, including Hertsmere.

One of his false addresses was in Elmroyd Avenue, Potters Bar.

He pleaded guilty in February last year to three counts of benefit fraud, totalling just over £18,500.

Kole-Emmanuel was given a nine-month jail sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to pay back the money.

Although he has now done that, Hertsmere Borough Council's anti-fraud team pressed for a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

And last Tuesday Kole-Emmanuel was back in the dock at St Albans Crown Court.

He was told to pay back £452,416.69 within nine months, or go to prison.

The money will go into the coffers of the Government.

Judge John Plumstead told him: "You have been running your finances with no regard for the law at all, milking the benefit system.

"Now it's pay back time. I have given you the least period in lieu of payment, you have until November 12 to pay or you will go to prison for three years."

At an earlier hearing, the judge had said: "It was clear that this was organised fraud outside of the category of someone working on the side or a couple claiming as a single parent."

Kole-Emmanuel, of Ponsonby Drive, Peterborough, will be paying his debt to the Treasury.

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