FRAUDSTERS have duped Barnsley Council out of £25,000 after submitting a fake application for a coronavirus grant.

The local authority prevented five attempts to swindle cash - totalling £110,000 - but was the victim of one claim.

Coun Alan Gardiner, cabinet spokesperson for core services, said: “Organised criminals sought to capitalise on a very difficult situation.

“Unfortunately the council has been the victim of one successful fraud of £25,000.

“The funds had already been received from national government so Barnsley Council has not suffered financially from this fraud.

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“The details have been forwarded to the National Investigation Service who is leading the investigation into cross-border, multi-authority Covid-19 business grant frauds and it would be inappropriate to comment further until the investigation has been completed.”