Grandparent welfare payments worth $15.8 million have been at the centre of a daycare rort.
According to news.com.au, police arrested six people on Wednesday for making repeated false claims on behalf of Family Day care centres they ran in Melbourne’s west.
“$15.8 million is a significant alleged welfare fraud and this is certainly the biggest one we’ve had in the last 12 months,” the AFP’s Commander Peter Crozier told reporters in Canberra on Thursday.
The majority of the claims were directly related to the Grandparent Childcare Benefit Scheme, which awards the coverage of the cost of fees for up to 50 hours of care per child per week.
“We will investigate any claims of illegal childcare services or improper behaviour, take action to shut down offenders and where necessary, bring them before the courts,” a spokesperson for the state’s Department of Education and Training said in a statement, according to the article on News.com.au.
Police have confiscated $1.1 million of assests belonging to those arrested, including two Melbourne properties, bank accounts and a pair of luxury. Police have seized these assets as proceeds of crime.
The alleged fraudsters were aged between 23 and 48 and are family members. They managed or provided direct day care services.
They have been charged with many offences including conspiracy to dishonestly cause a loss to the Commonwealth.
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