A BENEFITS fraudster has been given extra time by magistrates to settle her debts.

Theresa Burberry appeared before Swindon Magistrates' Court on Tuesday morning on a charge of non-payment of £7,466.50 owed to the courts.

Last September a crown court judge ordered that she pay the sum, after she admitted cheating taxpayers out of more than £140,000.

At the time Burberry was sentenced to eight months in jail.

She was told she must repay almost £50,000 in falsely claimed benefits as well as court costs of £7,500.

Burberry, 47, of Sanders Close, Swindon, said that she had made an agreement with the courts to pay £10 a month.

The claim initially caused confusion among court officers, who believed that the deal in place was for the Stratton mother-of-one to pay £10 a week.

Burberry told them that she owned a 40 per cent stake in her housing association home, worth £84,000, which she was selling later this year.

She said she expected to use the proceeds from the sale to settle her debts with the court.

Magistrates agreed to adjourn her case until January 9 next year, which they hope would give Burberry the time to make arrangements to allow her to pay off the money owed.