Lucy Taylor prosecuted Natalie Davis for failing to disclose a change in circumstances, which led to a £17,700.15 overpayment of Disability Living Allowance.
The fraud came to light when the BBC began an investigation into Butterfly’s massage parlour, which turned out to be a brothel owned by Ms Davis. The BBC provided their information to Avon & Somerset Constabulary who put Butterfly’s under surveillance in 2017. The surveillance showed Ms Davis going up and down stairs to enter and exit the premises, sweeping the yard and walking unaided. This was in stark contrast to her DLA claim form, which indicated she was reliant on a wheelchair and help from others seven days a week.
During the investigation a camera was seized containing images of Ms Davis on various holidays going back to 2013. The activities shown in the photographs included hot air ballooning, sea fishing, riding an elephant, zip-lining and climbing a rugged track in Snowdonia.
Evidence was uncovered detailing a number of flights Ms Davis had taken. No special assistance was requested for any of the flights and Ms Davis travelled alone on two of them, the first of which was taken in September 2012.
Ms Davis was sentenced to 32 weeks’ custody suspended for 18 months, 50 hours of unpaid work and a six week curfew.