The Loop

Weird golf news of the week: "Champion golfer" gets six months jail time for disability benefits fraud

March 12, 2015

On Wednesday, a U.K. man was sentenced to six months in jail for committing benefits fraud. How was he caught? By playing golf, according to The Telegraph.

Alan Bannister, 56, collected more than 26,000 pounds in disability benefits from 2007 to 2012. But while he claimed his arthritis limited him to walking 55 yards in 10 to 15 minutes, he frequently played golf (walking with a pull cart), carried a 7 handicap and was even a club champion.

Investigators working for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in Wales secretly filmed him playing golf. In one video, he's seen lifting his clubs and pull cart out of his trunk, walking to the first hole and teeing off. You can watch some of the footage of him being caught, um, golf handed:

An anonymous caller tipped off the DWP to Bannister's activities. Bannister had claimed his condition made it difficult for him to raise his arms or lift anything. According to Judge Recorder David Miller, "It was a blatant fraud. You grossly and dishonestly distorted your condition and your ability to walk."