Friday 17 November 2017 by Chris Ballard

Pudsey Bear convicted of disability benefit fraud


Pudsey Bear

The iconic Children in Need mascot has been found guilty of fraudulently claiming benefits after it was revealed he has perfect eyesight.

Despite helping to raise over £600m for the Children’s charity, DWP records show that Pudsey has fraudulently claimed approximately £140,000 in benefits since 2005.

The bear had always claimed that he was completely blind in his right eye.

However, Leeds Crown Court was shown covertly filmed footage of Pudsey – not wearing his bandana – throwing banknotes at a stripper with unerring accuracy. The filming was part of a honey trap, a ruse to which bears are particularly susceptible.

At the end of a three-day trial, jurors took just 32 minutes to find Pudsey guilty.

The judge, who seemed quite amused to be presiding over the trial of a fictional bear character, told the defendant to expect a jail sentence before accusing him of ‘bearfaced lying’ and stating that he hoped the conviction would give other would-be fraudsters ‘paws for thought’.

Pudsey responded by saying, “Go fuck yourself.”

The bear’s girlfriend, Blush, claims to have been unaware of the deception.

She told reporters, “Perhaps there are things I should have spotted – his ability to casually toss fan mail across the room directly into the bin, his frequent success in darts competitions… he must have had perfect 3D vision all along.

“But hindsight is 20/20 isn’t it – just like Pudsey’s normal sight as it turns out.”

This is yet another scandal which threatens to taint the BBC’s reputation after a turbulent few years. A spokesperson for the broadcaster said, “Pudsey who? Never heard of him.”

Pudsey will be sentenced next week.

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