Bodybuilder caught lifting weights while claiming disability must pay £35,000
An amateur bodybuilder has been ordered to pay £35,000 after he was filmed pumping iron while claiming a back injury had left him wheelchair-bound.
Curt Gorog, of Emley, Huddersfield, tried to claim a £150,000 payout for an injury sustained in 2012 which he said left him disabled.
Until March 2016 he attended benefits assessments in a wheelchair and claimed over £50,000 in welfare payments.
But a surveillance operation orchestrated by QBE Insurance and run by law firm DWF revealed Gorog completing a weight routine in his local gym.
Footage was also obtained of him completing a press-up challenge with a child on his back in August 2016.
Social media photos showed Gorog posing by a new Mercedes he claimed belonged to his partner - a nursery nurse - as well as snaps of him clutching champagne bottles.
QBE Insurance began investigating Gorog because of the large number of whiplash and personal injury claims he had made.
It emerged he fled on foot after a high-speed car chase from police in March 2017, where he lept over a hedge after throwing drugs and a mobile phone from the car window.
Gorog tried to abandon his claim when his insurer confronted him with the evidence, but was pursued through the courts.
At a hearing at Manchester County Court this month, he was quizzed about a conviction for assault in February 2015, his muscular physique and the footage of the press-up routine.
Gorog said his muscles were all down to "good genetics".
The presiding judge ruled Gorog lied for years about his health, and said he used the wheelchair to trick the Department of Work and Pensions into paying out benefits he did not need.
He was ordered to pay £35,000 in legal fees.
Paul Holmes, head of casualty fraud at DWF, said: "The more we and our clients looked into Curt Paul Gorog, the more concerned we became.
"Here was a man claiming he could not work, and even attending benefits assessments in a wheelchair.
"However, he was involved in criminal acts and attempting to escape from police when supposedly incapacitated, and was filmed in the gym lifting very heavy weights. "
He added: "We will also be raising this case with the relevant authorities."