Former Newham registrar jailed for helping gang illegally claim £4m in benefits

15:49 01 February 2013

Azu Akpom, a former Newham registrar, was jailed for five years.

Azu Akpom, a former Newham registrar, was jailed for five years.


A councillor said he felt “betrayed” by a crooked registrar jailed for five years on Tuesday for helping an African gang milk the benefits system by creating fake birth certificates.

Azu Akpom started to work for Newham Council in 2004 but he was sacked in 2011 after it emerged he made up five false identities for children so the ringleader, Ugandan-born Ruth Nabuguzi, could bring people into the country as dependents and claim money off the state illegally.

He was found guilty of one charge of misconduct in public office at Croydon Crown Court and jailed for five years.

The sentence was run concurrently with five counts of supplying articles for use in fraud for which he was jailed for four years.

Cllr Unmesh Desai, Newham Council’s executive member for crime and anti-social behaviour, said: “Akpom systematically abused his position and in-depth knowledge of the system.

“We employed him in good faith and he abused that trust. He betrayed us and many other people.”

Akpom, a Nigerian-born father of three, was trapped by an incriminating text message to Nabuguzi after the General Registry Office contacted Newham’s Registry Office in 2011 concerned about his registration of twins Catherine and Godfrey Lubeta and another child Louise Kayaya - none of whom had actually been born.

Nabuguzi, 49, of Church Road, Manor Park, also used several false identities to claim payments for herself to build a complex of luxury apartments, shops, restaurants, and a hotel in her home city of Kampala.

She was jailed for 19 years in 2012 for fraudulently claiming over £4million in benefits.

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 15:39
The world record attempt to do the world's largest charleston at Spitalfields Market in London

Hundreds of people took out their dancing shoes and assembled in an iconic east London market to move their way to a new world record.

United Kingdom
Yesterday, 13:34
The budget consultation took place over eight weeks (picture: Chris Radburn/PA)

If you had your say on the council’s budget challenge consultation, then you were among more than 3,700 people to take part.

Newham Council
Yesterday, 10:53
Police called to Plaistow following reports of a stabbing

A man was found suffering from stab wounds in Plaistow last night.

London hospital
Yesterday, 07:00
Discover, children's story centre, Stratford

A popular children’s charity has received a £100,000 grant to help make its building more accessible.


Most read news


Angharad Baa Stool in Rare Breed.

Great British Life is offering a sheepskin footstool worth £199 to a lucky reader

Read more
Amazon: Everything you want to buy all in one place!

With £1,500 to spend online at Amazon, there’s really nothing you can’t buy.

Read more
You'll be stocked up on toiletries  for a while!

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more.

Read more

Digital Edition

Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder