A welfare queen who received over $72,000 in taxpayer benefits would often lament that the only food she had was halal meals provided by her local mosque. However, when authorities discovered what she posted on Facebook, they wasted no time in canceling her benefits and throwing her in jail for 3 years.
Some may recognize Carina Reid from Porshe promos, boutique openings, and other modeling gigs the petite brunette has taken in the past few years, which is why it was particularly sad to see such a successful young woman fall into a pit of financial despair — at least, that’s what she wanted the taxpayers to believe.
The 32-year-old model/businesswoman/scam artist had accumulated over $72,000 in UK benefits, most of which paid for her lavish lifestyle, trips around the world, and countless holidays abroad. Fortunately, this all caught up with her when an extensive investigation turned to the one place you can find just about everything you need to know about a person.
The Daily Mail reports that Reid has been sentenced to 3 years in jail after police saw numerous Facebook posts in which she brags about glamorous and expensive endeavors in Hong Kong, Dubai, Ibiza, Cannes, and other major cities across the globe. Already collecting an inconceivable amount in welfare, authorities were shocked to find that Reid had 19 bank accounts containing over $260,000.
Reid had garnered sympathy on Facebook by claiming that the only food she had to eat was given to her by a local mosque in Chelsea, but her halal diet seemed to be interrupted by pricey dinners she would then photograph herself eating at gourmet restaurants. Although Reid denied that her lifestyle was anything but destitute, pictures of her lounging poolside, posing on cruises, and taking helicopter rides over the cityscape told a different story.
The Isleworth Crown Court heard that Reid began claiming benefits from Kensington and Chelsea Council in 2009 after she stated that her boutique’s income was very low. By simply clicking on her public profile, police saw that she was sipping bubbly in Harrods, celebrating at ritzy London establishments, and spending weekends in 5-star hotels.
“It’s a shock,” one of Reid’s neighbors on King’s Road explained. “We barely saw her because of her jetset lifestyle. She was always partying and just gave the impression of being very successful.”
The investigation provided proof that Reid had not only purchased a luxury flat on King’s Road with a $29,000 deposit but that she also spent nearly $168,000 in 2013 on property in Dubai, where she was expanding her beauty business.
Reid was charged with 9 dishonesty charges, 8 of which were related to her failure to disclose the content of her 19 bank accounts. She was also charged with falsely claiming to be a tenant of her King’s Road apartment when she was actually the owner. In total, the court heard that she was overpaid at least $74,000 in government benefits, more than a year’s salary for many burdened taxpayers.
So far, Reid has not repaid any of the taxpayer money she squandered, and she remains unapologetic about her lifestyle, still claiming that she didn’t live extravagantly, the London Evening Standard reports. She maintains that some of the trips abroad were funded by men and close friends and that others were written off as business training trips. To add insult to injury, Reid also states that she pays all of her taxes like every other citizen.
It’s safe to say that Reid will likely never pay back a cent of what she stole from taxpayers, but hopefully, her jail time will be enough to show her what it’s really like to live with the minimum. Unfortunately, welfare queens like Reid are many, and it’s impossible for the government to prevent cases like this without implementing stricter requirements for applicants.
Certain states in the U.S. are now requiring that welfare recipients work at least 20 hours per week or participate in volunteer work to earn their benefits. While many welfare leeches are complaining that they have to work like the rest of the taxpayers from whom they feed, others see it as a way to keep the disingenuous from stealing federal dollars.
There is no perfect system for welfare that does both the taxpayers and honest recipients equal justice, but with stricter requirements and the promotion of contributing to society, the system can easily be given a much-needed makeover that boosts the economy and relieves the burden from hardworking citizens.