12 October 2000
Jail for fake field fraud farmer

A FARMER has been jailed for claiming subsidies for non-existent fields with locations in the Atlantic Ocean, reports The Daily Telegraph.

When grid references given by Joseph Bowden were checked, they were found to relate to 100 acres of the North Atlantic, between Greenland and Iceland.

Mr Bowden, 46, of Heanton, near Barnstaple, Devon, had claimed 105,000 in EU subsidies in the scam, which was not detected for almost three years.

He admitted four charges of deception, an attempted deception, and four charges of false accounting at Exeter Crown Court.

Nine charges, including three of arson, were dropped.

The Daily Express reports that Mr Bowden was jailed for 30 months.

Mr Bowden claimed he was dyslexic and confused by subisdy forms, reports the Express.