A Littlehampton town councillor has been charged with fraud, police confirmed.
River ward councillor Malcolm Belchamber, 69, of High Street, Littlehampton, has been summonsed to court over two allegations, following an investigation by Sussex Police’s economic crime unit.
A police spokesman said: “The summons alleges that he committed two offences.
“First, that in November 2014, he made or supplied an article for use in fraud – a letter falsely stating to Arun District Council that a local council tenant was entitled to a higher rate of housing benefit, contrary to the Fraud Act 2006.
“Second, that between 2004 and 2005 he made a false instrument with intent it be used as genuine – a letter to the same council purporting to have come from the Home Office stating that the same man had indefinite leave to remain in the UK, contrary to the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981.”
The spokesman added the second letter was not actually sent.
Mr Belchamber, who was made an MBE for services to Littlehampton in 2004, is a four-time mayor.
He is due to appear at Worthing Magistrates Court on Tuesday, September 6.
The town council and Mr Belchamber declined to comment.