Stopping fraud in Newham

Newham Council is hitting fraudsters hard and taking action against those who try to commit fraud against the council.

The council’s Fraud Team is supporting International Fraud Awareness Week (14 to 20 November 2021) and asking everyone to report suspected fraud to the council.  

Newham’s Fraud Team investigates all types of fraud and corruption allegations affecting the council, with tenancy fraud being a key focus. 

Tenants are committing fraud if they have a tenancy with the council but live elsewhere and sublet the property to another person (including family members). Tenancy fraud also includes providing false information when applying for housing, exercising the Right to Buy, and illegally applying to succeed a tenancy of someone who has died.  

With a zero-tolerance approach to tenancy fraud, Newham’s Fraud Team has successfully stopped tenancy fraud with a notional value of over £2.3 million over the last two years, by: 

  • Returning 33 council homes, that were being unlawfully sublet, back into our housing stock 

  • Maintaining our council housing stock, by stopping 15 Right to Buy applications, and stopping 6 succession applications 

  • Making sure our residents get social housing, by removing 24 individuals from the housing waiting list, who made fraudulent applications 

Councillor Terence Paul, Lead Member for Finance and Corporate Services, said:  

“Our zero-tolerance approach to tenancy fraud is hitting fraudsters hard.  

“Newham’s Fraud Team investigates all allegations of tenancy fraud and takes action to protect our residents’ interests. 

 “The number of our residents demanding social housing outweighs what is available. We are doing all we can to ensure our residents are in our homes.  

“We will take action, which will include criminal prosecution through the courts, and we will always look to make a claim for legal costs and compensation.  

“We are committed to tackling fraud in Newham and protecting our residents.”  

Fraud can be reported to Newham Council by emailing [email protected], calling 0800 052 2420 or by reporting through the Newham website

Councillor Terence Paul added: 

“During the Covid pandemic, our Fraud Team successfully stopped 42 grants to the value of £264,383. This ensured the grants were given to those who truly needed the support across Newham and not fraudsters.” 

Published: 15 Nov 2021