THE widow of a Royal Navy diver has been jailed for nine months after she defrauded £144,000 from the armed forces’ pension scheme.
Carol Garside, 48, of Yarborough Close, Holton-le-Clay, Lincolnshire, admitted she was not entitled to the pension funds she claimed between 1993 and 2011 because she had cohabited with and then married fireman Andrew Garside in the years after the death of her first husband, diver Michael Thomas, who was killed in a car crash with a friend in 1987.
An anonymous tip-off led Ministry of Defence investigators to check her claims over the previous 18 years.
Jailing Garside, Judge Sean Morris said: ‘This was deliberate fraud and for a considerable period of time you had a better standard of living.’
The court heard there will be Proceeds of Crime proceedings against Garside later this year to force her to repay the money.