A north-east man has been ordered to carry out unpaid work after scamming almost £10,000 from the public purse.
Over two years, David Bruce pocketed thousands of pounds in unemployment and housing benefits he was not entitled to.
The 52-year-old appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday for sentencing after previously admitting the offence.
Solicitor Charles Benzies said his client’s life had been on a “downward spiral” for some time, which resulted in him racking up debts and owing friends money.
Between December 2016 and January 2018, Bruce fraudulently claimed more than £4,100 in Jobseeker’s Allowance from the Department for Work and Pensions, and almost £5,800 in housing benefits from Aberdeenshire Council.
He is currently out of work, and has begun paying back the sums via “modest” contributions from his benefits.
Sheriff Ian Duguid said: “These are obviously very serious matters because you have obtained benefits to the extent of £9,800 to which you weren’t entitled to.
“You accept your financial circumstances have changed and you are subject to a modest deduction to repay that.
“My options are sending you to jail or giving you a community payback order.”
Bruce, of Kingsfield Road, Kintore was ordered to complete 60 hours of unpaid work within the next year.
He will also be under the supervision of social workers for the same length of time.