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ESCAPE NO; Most wanted fraud fugitives face justice.

Byline: VICTORIA WELDON

SCOTLAND'S most wanted fugitives have finally faced justice after being snared while on the run in Spain.

Anthony Kearney and Donna McCafferty were arrested on the Costa Blanca last November after appearing on a list of wanted Brits.

Armed Spanish cops led the pair away in handcuffs after four years on the run.

Last week, they admitted a string of fraud and money laundering charges at Glasgow SheriffCourt. 'The pair claimed housing benefit when they had more than pounds 330,000 in offshore accounts.

Kearney, 45, also claimed almost pounds 23,000 in income support and pocketed more than pounds 10,000 from credit card frauds. They went on the run after an investigation was launched in May 2004.

Kearney admitted defrauding pounds 42,392 from the Department of Work and Pensions between December 1997 and March 2004.

He admitted defrauding Kearney had accounts with pounds 336,000 in them pounds 10,350 from the Bank of Scotland and Clydesdale Bank by using a false identity to take out credit cards.

The dad-of-one also pled guilty to using fake company names to transfer pounds 126,400 into an offshore account.

McCafferty, 43, of Airdrie, admitted defrauding pounds 13,003 of housing benefit between November 1999 and March 2004. She had been charged with further frauds of pounds 74,197 but struck a deal to have a not guilty plea accepted.

Prosecutor Alistair Logan told the court that Kearney submitted an application to the DWP stating that he had only pounds 200 in capital.

3 Mr Logan said: "It was later discovered that he had three accounts in the Isle of Man which, during the period he was claiming benefits, had between pounds 1000 and pounds 336,742.12 in them." He added McCafferty was a joint holder of the accounts.

Sheriff Sean Murphy QC deferred sentence until next month and McCafferty was bailed. Kearney is already serving a five-year prison sentence for attempting to extort pounds 35,000.

SUNDAY EMAIL reporters@sundaymail.co.uk

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Snared: Our story captures the moment when McCafferty and Kearney, right, were arrested in Spain and led away in cuffs
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Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Dec 20, 2009
Words:359
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