PARENTS
15/06/2015 07:40 BST | Updated 15/06/2015 13:59 BST

Father Sends Lookalike To Paternity Test In An Attempt To Avoid Paying Child Maintenance

A father sent a "lookalike" man to take a paternity test in his place, in an attempt to avoid paying child maintenance.

Thomas Kenny, 25, from Shirley, West Midlands, was in a long-term relationship when he had a "fling" with another woman who became pregnant.

Kenny appeared in Birmingham Crown Court after failing to complete a paternity test and sending another man to take the test in his place.

According to the Birmingham Mail, Judge Philip Parker QC said in court: “I know you are said to be the loving father of two children by your long standing relationship but this case shows you were prepared to disown a child of your own for financial gain.”

thomas kenny

The father already had one child with his long-term partner and she was pregnant with their second child together when he had the affair.

The court heard that the woman with whom Kenny had an affair, refused to have an abortion but Kenny did "everything he could" to avoid paying for the child.

Judge Philip Parker QC added: "You wished her to have an abortion which she declined and then in December 2012, when you knew you were the father of her forthcoming child, you decided to deny paternity."

Kenny was ordered by a doctor to provide a DNA sample on the 24 June 2013, but he sent someone else in his place.

Judge Parker said he had read positive references suggesting Kenny was well-behaved, but this incident was dishonest.

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Kenny was told he had caused stress to the mother of this child, who no longer wanted anything to do with him.

Heidi Kubic who was defending Kenny argued that it was a mistake made in response to the threat of losing contact with his sons from his long-term relationship.

Kenny admitted conspiracy to defraud.

He was ordered to pay £885 compensation and £500 costs, and was sentenced to six months in prison, suspended for 12 months.

The Department of Work and Pensions told HuffPost UK Parents that they have had around 10-15 similar cases to this one in the past 10 years.

On a yearly basis, they receive around 10-15 cases of fraud relating to child maintenance.

The department has around 1.5 million cases overall dealing with child maintenance.

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