Lothian woman released from jail two weeks into year-long fraud sentence

A woman who was jailed after carrying out a six-year benefit scam has been released just two weeks into her sentence following an appeal.

Sunday, 28th March 2021, 1:18 pm
Updated Sunday, 28th March 2021, 1:23 pm

Rosanna Anderson took more than £50,000 from the public purse by failing to inform the Department of Work and Pensions she was living with her partner in the family home.

Anderson was led to the cells in tears earlier this month after admitting the fraud and being jailed for 12 months at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

But the 31-year-old, who has six children, was back living at her home in Tranent, East Lothian, last week after being released following an appeal to the prison term was lodged by her legal team.

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Friend Danielle Smith posted a message and a picture of the pair on social media, revealing Anderson had returned home early.

The post read: “My girl is home. Home where she belongs, back to her babies.

“[I] couldn’t of (sic) had a better outcome from the appeal today. What a long two weeks it’s been.

“I’m so proud of you, and so glad I’ve got to wrap my arms around you again so soon.”

Rosanna Anderson pleaded guilty to being knowingly concerned in fraudulent activity by claiming excess payments of Child Tax Credits of £55,000. Picture: Contributed

Anderson had admitted claiming excess Child Tax Credits payments of £55,000 while living with her ex partner Stuart McTaggart in Tranent between May 2012 and January 2018.

The Scottish Court Service has confirmed Anderson was released from custody by the High Court on March 16 and that the Appeal Court will decide on her future on April 13.

Anderson was jailed by Sheriff Wendy Sheehan just weeks after she and partner Gordon Duncan were handed £2839 by the local community following a fundraising appeal to help their six-month-old son.

The child was diagnosed with torticollis, a tightening of the neck, and flat head syndrome in December and a specially designed helmet was recommended for his development.

The cost of the helmet, which is not available on the NHS, was raised through a Just Giving page and cash gifts in just a few weeks.

Anderson regularly posted updates and photographs of her son’s progress on social media and the child was fitted with the helmet by tech company Technology In Motion last month.

One resident, who did not want to be named, said she was “shocked and disgusted” at Anderson being allowed home two weeks after receiving a 12-month jail sentence.

She said: “The whole community can’t really believe Rosanna has been released so early. We understand the appeal has to go through but in our opinion she needs to be punished for what she did.

“There is still raw emotions around here regarding her accepting money from the community for her son while at the same time she was conning tens of thousands of pounds out of the system.

“Don’t get me wrong, the boy deserves our help but she definitely doesn’t.”

Rosanna Anderson pleaded guilty to being knowingly concerned in fraudulent activity by claiming excess payments of Child Tax Credits of £55,000 by failing to declare she was living with Stuart McTaggart, her then partner, between May 15, 2012 and January 19, 2018.

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