Fraudster climbed Mount Kilimanjaro while on disability benefits
Triathlon athlete, Kilimanjaro fraud

Prosecutors said a man was convicted of fraud after claiming thousands of pounds in disability payments despite climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, winning a triathlon, and competing in the Phoenix Winter Games.

Mark Lloyd, 33, claimed £6,551.80 in Personal Independence Payments (PIP) from October 2014 to February 2016, claiming that a back injury and PTSD in the army had severely limited his mobility and capacity to care for himself.

Lloyd, of Pontypridd, South Wales, had pleaded not guilty to one count of dishonestly neglecting to disclose facts in order to benefit himself, but was found guilty after a trial at Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.
Lloyd said benefits assessors he couldn’t bend or stretch, needed walking assistance, and had pain going short distances, according to the court.

He was found to have exaggerated his demands, and he had climbed Mount Kilimanjaro five times in 18 months while claiming benefits, walking between eight and 12 hours each day.

Lloyd also competed in a triathlon while in Malta for the World Powerboat Championships.

Lloyd also filed a new claim form in July 2016 around this time, stating that his mobility and care needs had grown.

“Mark Lloyd flouted the system to claim thousands of pounds in disability payments while taking part in challenging physical challenges,” said Laura Walters, a prosecutor in the Crown Prosecution Service’s specialised fraud branch.

“Lloyd drastically inflated his care needs in order to collect the money, but he could not hide from the prosecution’s overwhelming evidence, which included images of him climbing Mount Kilimanjaro and competing in a triathlon.”

Lloyd will be sentenced at Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates’ Court on August 3.

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