Search

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.

Archant

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 Newham News Stories

Yesterday, 17:49
The Hammersmith and City line is part suspended between Barking and Moorgare  File pic: Katie Collins/PA Wire

Tube users face severe delays on the Hammersmith and City Underground line due to a signal failure at East Ham

Yesterday, 17:17
Michael Coe, 35, faces a

A Muslim convert and associate of Anjem Choudary has been found guilty this afternoon of knocking a schoolboy unconscious for cuddling his girlfriend.

Southwark Crown Court
Yesterday, 15:59
The bus strike will occur on two separate days   Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA

Bus routes in the borough are set to be affected by two all-day strikes.

London
Yesterday, 15:00
Some feel the Bow East Goods Yard will pollute Stratford, the centre of London's Olympic legacy Picture: Philip Toscano/PA Images

This week we ask whether or not the planned factories at Bow East Goods Yard will improve Stratford.

United Kingdom

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

You could win £15,000 to spend on either their mortgage or a deposit towards the home of their dreams

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a period of time when you simply don’t have to worry about finding the money each month to pay your mortgage? When you don’t have to put money aside from your monthly income, or worry about having to afford other essential outgoings?

Read more
Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

Read more

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Newham Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now