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Man faces jail after keeping father’s dead body to claim benefits

Posted on - 17th January, 2012 - 6:06pm | Author - | Posted in - Crime

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A man has been warned that he faces jail after keeping his father’s dead body in his living room so he could claim his benefits.

Christopher Blackburn, 29, pleaded guilty at Preston Crown Court to preventing a lawful and decent burial of a dead body between October 31 2010 and March 23 2011.

Police found the body of Guy Blackburn, 54, on a bed in the living room of his home in Penwortham, Lancashire, on March 22 last year after neighbours raised concerns.

A post mortem examination showed he had died from natural causes – probably several months earlier.

The defendant had been living at the house for the duration that his father was dead. 

Blackburn also admitted to theft in claiming £1,308 in income support that had been paid into his father’s bank account after his death.

After the hearing at Preston Crown Court, Detective Inspector Marc Nasser said:

“This is an unusual case and it is the first of its type that we have dealt with in Lancashire.

“It was a challenging crime and one that most members of the community will find appalling.

“I am pleased that Blackburn has pleaded guilty and will now be sentenced for the offences.”

The case was adjourned to March 12 for pre-sentence reports which will include a psychological evaluation.

 Judge Anthony Russell QC said all sentencing options remained open but in his view these were “serious offences” and a custodial term was “quiet likely”.

Blackburn has been granted unconditional bail.

Photo by Tony Worrall on Flickr

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