Friday, March 11, 2011

Former Iron Maiden singer gets 9 months jail for benefit fraud

Former Iron Maiden singer Paul Di'Anno has been sentenced to nine months in prison for fraud.

NME reports the singer, real name Paul Andrews, pleaded guilty to eight counts of benefit fraud amounting to more than £45,000 at Salisbury Crown Court earlier this month.

D'Anno will serve at least four-and-a-half months in prison before being eligible for parole.

He was charged after investigators at the Department of Work and Pensions received an anonymous tip-off that he was still performing live, despite saying he was unable to work. They reviewed YouTube videos of him onstage as recently as 2006, despite him claiming incapacity benefit since 2002.

During his sentencing in Salisbury on Friday, Jane Miller QC ignored a plea from Di'Anno, in which he said he had received very little from performing, and needed to support his family.

"Your greed has cost this country a lot of money," she said. "The claims were for a long time and for a large cost.

"It must be a custodial sentence. I do not accept you only got expenses. I give you credit for your guilty pleas and reduce the sentence from the guideline 12 months to that of nine months."

As the lead singer of Iron Maiden between 1978 and 1981, Andrews appeared on the band’s first two albums and the e.p., “Maiden Japan.”

Iron Maiden Iron Maiden

See also:

Iron Maiden win first Grammy
Former Iron Maiden singer faces jail time for benefit fraud