A total of £315,000 of taxpayer’s cash was fraudulent claimed by benefit cheats last year.

Harrow Borough Council revealed the latest figures as part of its anti-fraud week to highlight the authority’s work tackling scammers.

The council's fraud team says it has prevented losses of around £1million, indentified 25 cases of housing or council tax benefit fraud and also social care direct payment fraud amounting to £315,000.

The team has identified four key areas of fraud risk against the council:  disabled parking badge fraud, false claims and unreported changes for housing benefit and council tax, housing tenancy fraud and social care and personal budgets fraud.

Council leader Councillor Susan Hall said: “Fraud is stealing, plain and simple, and people are not just stealing from us, they are stealing from their neighbours who work hard and pay their taxes.

“I hope this week will really show people how unfair this type of behaviour is and what the council is doing to stamp it out.”