A record number of Australians caught abusing the welfare system have been dobbed in this year, with more than 30,000 people believed to have gained access to money they’re not entitled to in NSW alone.
Nearly 25,500 were tipped off for fraudulent behaviour in Queensland and more than 21,000 people were reported in Victoria for the 2016/17 period.
With concerned family, friends and community members now able to lodge their suspicions either online or via phone, tax payers have been putting their feet down over the misallocation of their hard-earned cash.
The alarmingly high amount of people caught exploiting the system for their own financial benefit has been deemed an ‘epidemic’ by the Department of Human Services.
‘It’s an epidemic and it needs to be dealt with,’ Criminal Lawyer, Andrew Weisman told Nine News.
‘If someone’s long-term unemployed, yet they’re living like they’re long-term employed, that may very well raise eyebrows.’
A man who was believed to be receiving payments because of a bad back was tipped off, along with multiple people believed to be receiving the payments on behalf of deceased family members.
Another female claiming to be a single mum was discovered to be living with her husband, all while claiming up to $80,000 in benefits.
But Australians aren’t standing by to watch as dodgy dealings take place before their eyes, with some not even holding back on dobbing in their family.
‘Most Australians are very happy to support people when they’re down on their luck, but they want to see integrity in the system, and that’s exactly what our tip-off line does,’ Human Services Minister, Alan Tudge said.
A 66-year-old Centrelink cheat was found to have claimed $90,000 worth of bogus payments by using two fake identities.
Meanwhile, others were busted claiming disability pensions after footage revealed they were being untruthful about the extent of their injuries.
There have been two Government taskforces established so far in Queensland, with the south Brisbane city of Logan identified to be a hot spot.
Australians can register tip-offs by going to the Government’s Human Services website.