A mum who blamed “illiteracy” for a £60,000 benefits con was spared jail — and wrote a thank you message for supporters minutes later.
Susan Williams said she could not read or write and had to rely on family and friends to study and fill in forms for her handouts.
The carer had illegally pocketed income support and other subsidies while using a fake national insurance number.
A judge at Manchester Crown Court said Williams, 47, must have known what she was carrying out fraud.
But he handed her a suspended jail sentence saying she had “shown some remorse” and found herself in a ”difficult situation.”
In a Facebook message to friends, Williams wrote: “‘Escape jail today. Nearly got me self 18 months fck that no more stupid s*** for me.”
The mum-of-two, from Moston, Gtr Manchester, failed to tell officials she took up work as a carer and handed her bosses the fake NI number to avoid detection.
She was pocketing care allowances by looking after her father Bernard — but then carried on claiming them after he moved into a home.
The court heard Williams had 13 previous offences on her record including dishonesty matters dating back to October 2000.
The total overpayment was £59,945.95.
The court heard Willliams didn’t have the means to pay back the money she had taken, and the Department for Work and Pensions were going to be taking civil action to try and recoup it.
Defending Williams, Alistair Reid explained to the court her 16 year old daughter had just given birth to a baby and she would be helping with their care.
He added: “She is effectively illiterate and the forms that had to be filled in were often done so by friends or family members.”
Judge Robert Atherton said: “I don’t accept for a minute that you didn’t know what you were doing.
“You have shown some remorse and you find yourself in a difficult situation – but you have stolen from the community and you must give back to the community.”
Williams, who pleaded guilty to benefit fraud, was sentenced to 52 weeks in jail suspended for two years.
She must also complete 250 hours unpaid work and complete a 12 months supervision order.