FRAUD officers have snared a ‘deadbeat dad’ owing £10,000 in child support after using new powers to analyse DNA profiles.
Investigators used the criminal database to check the genetic fingerprints of an imposter used to cheat maintenance payments.
The new measures to check police records were brought in last September to assist Department for Work and Pensions probes.
Christopher Wilder, 36, had attempted to avoid supporting his child for nearly five years and arranged for Thomas Mann to take a DNA test.
But an investigation was launched after the mum gave a sworn statement that Wilder was the dad and photo ID provided at the test wasn’t him.
The test sample was cross-referred to the police DNA database and identified as 47-year-old Mann.
Both men were quizzed by cops and then pleaded guilty in March to conspiracy to defraud a mother and child of support payments.
Mann was sentenced to 9 months in prison suspended for two years and Wilder to two years imprisonment.
Adults convicted of a serious offence have their DNA profiles retained indefinitely.
Those arrested but with no conviction can have their records kept for up to 12 years. There are around 5 million profiles on the national database.
The DNA powers also sit alongside measures to deduct money direct from earnings and savings from those who avoid supporting their families.
Property can be seized and revoking driving licences through the courts is also an option.
Minister for Family Support, Housing and Child Maintenance Caroline Dinenage said: “The vast majority of parents who separate work together in the best interests of their children.
“But when the small minority try to cheat the system – and deny their children the support they need – we won’t hesitate to use all the powers we have to bring them to justice.”