31 Mar 2015

Sepuloni's mother sentenced for benefit fraud

7:00 pm on 31 March 2015

The mother of Labour MP Carmel Sepuloni has been sentenced to four-and-a-half months home detention for illegally receiving benefits totalling about $34,000.

Carmel Sepuloni

Carmel Sepuloni Photo: RNZ

In the New Plymouth District Court this afternoon Beverley Anne Sepuloni was sentenced on 19 charges of applying for benefits she was not entitled to and of not declaring she was living with her partner between 2003 and 2014.

Judge Chris Sygrove also ordered Sepuloni, 59, to complete 250 hours of community week and make $15,000 in reparations at $20 a week.

Her partner Micheal Rangi was sentenced to 6 months home detention and ordered to complete 200 hours community work and make $15,000 in reparations at $20 a week.

Beverley Anne Sepuloni leaving court on 31 March 2015.

Beverley Anne Sepuloni leaving court on 31 March 2015. Photo: RNZ / Robin Martin

Carmel Sepuloni was temporarily stood down from her role as Labour's social development spokesperson following charges being against her mother.

Party leader Andrew Little said Ms Sepuloni would get her job back later this month.

"Once the sentencing is completed and I understand that happens at the end of this month then life will return to normal for Carmel and for the caucus", he said.

"She will go back to being the spokesperson for social development and all the portfolios will go back to where they were."