Man, 48, charged with fraudulently claiming food and shelter after Grenfell fire

Nick Charity

A man has been charged with fraud in relation to the Grenfell Tower fire.

Moses Ettienne is alleged to have fraudulently obtained food and accommodation after the blaze, the Metropolitan Police said.

The 48-year-old was arrested on Saturday and is charged with one count of fraud by false representation relating to a claim he lived in the tower block at the time of the fire on June 14 last year.

Ettienne, of no fixed address, is due to appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Monday.

There have been numerous cases of fraud relating to Grenfell including a drug dealer who gained £87,000 and a cleaner who stole £53,000 form the Grenfell victims fund.

This latest incident follows Abdelkarim Rekaya, 28, who admitted lying about living in the tower to gain almost £90,000 in financial support and accommodation.

He was convicted of fraud and false representation and one count of obtaining leave to remain by deception at Isleworth Crown Court on Friday.

Detective Superintendent, Matt Bonner, a senior investigating officer for the Met Police, said: “I have previously described the actions of those who exploited the tragedy for their own personal gain as truly appalling.

“Not only have their actions exploited the aid and support intended for those most affected, but they also risk misrepresenting the Grenfell community as they continue to try and come to terms with their grief.

“Abdelkarim Rekaya invented a story for his own self gain and exploited the generosity of the public and the local council.

"My thoughts remain with the Grenfell community at this difficult time, the genuine victims who should continue to be at the heart and centre of all we do."

A total of 72 people lost their lives in the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017.

At the Grenfell inquiry fire commander Richard Welch told victims' families: “We didn't let you down, the building let us all down."

London Fire Service has taken flack over a delayed decision to repeal official advice that residents should "stay put" in their flats, and it wasn't until tw hours into the blaze that fire fighters tarted telling people toe evacuate.

The inquiry continues.