|Surprise! "Boob Job" Benefit Cheat's Husband is Alive|
Parents say Kellaway faked death to avoid prison
Stephen Kellaway, husband of the woman who used benefits swindled from Hammersmith and Fulham Council to have her breasts enlarged, is alive and living in Sri Lanka.
Nelli, 41 claimed that 52 year-old Stephen died while they were on holiday in her native Russia. She was arrested in 2008 as she returned to the UK carrying an urn, which she said contained Steven’s cremated remains.
Earlier this month she pleaded guilty to fraud and money laundering at Kingston Crown Court and on Friday, January 15 was given a 24 week suspended sentence with an 18 month supervision order and 40 hours' unpaid work.
Kellaway swindled £57,000 of housing and council tax benefit from Hammersmith & Fulham Council. Evidence seized by council officers suggests that while in Russia she blew the money on cosmetic dentistry and plastic surgery, including breast enlargements for herself and her daughter, Natalia, 24. Natalia however has denied she has had surgery.
The prosecution said investigations had been carried out to determine whether he had actually died or not, and lawyer Mark Himsworth added: " As far as we know, he’s not in this country."
Since then, his parents have revealed that Stephen Kellaway, who has previous convictions for fraud, has been to their bungalow in Brighton three times since his "death", including a visit in November.
They said they had no idea he had been recorded as dead until they read about his wife's trial in a newspaper.
His stepmother Jenny told the Daily Mail: " I was astonished when I read the article because I knew he was alive – we had seen him just a few weeks ago.
"Faking his own death is unforgivable. We have had people phoning us up with their condolences, and have had to explain to them that he is still alive. It has been extremely upsetting. "
She said that after his Russian trip, they heard nothing from him for over a year. " Then on August 22, 2009, he suddenly turned up at our house asking for money," said his stepmother. "He was very nervous and made us keep our voices down when we were in the garden in case someone heard him.
"‘When he went out he demanded to wear a Panama hat to disguise himself."
At Christmas, Kellaway's children Stephanie, 10 and eight year-old Max came to stay with their grandparents. Says Jenny: "Max said 'My Daddy is in Sri Lanka buying a big house for us because everyone there is poor'.
" He said that Stephen was using a passport in the name of a four-year-old boy called John who had died."
The Kellaways met in a pub in the 1990s while Stephen was running a counselling service in Hammersmith, and married in 1997.
The couple owned a number of properties which earned £100,000 annual rent, but were still claiming housing benefit.
January 27, 2010