As a dead man, Ahmad Akhtary shouldn't have needed a doctor's appointment.
Akhtary's checkup, six months after he allegedly died in Afghanistan, scuttled his ex-wife's attempt to collect 300,000 pounds (US$550,000) on a life insurance policy.
At a court hearing last week in Gloucester, a judge sentenced 34-year-old Akhtary to 60 hours of community service and his former wife, Anne Akhtary, to 40 hours of community service but suspended prison sentences of nine months each.
Anne Akhtary, 43, admitted trying to claim the payout from the Norwich Union insurance company by using a forged death certificate from Afghanistan claiming that her husband had died of brain trauma in an accident.
Within weeks, however, Norwich Union investigators were tipped off about the doctor's appointment.
"They were told that Mr. Akhtary's GP had seen him at his practice and he had attended hospital so it was not the most sophisticated way of going about making a false claim," said prosecutor James Cranfield.
Akhtary had continued to live openly in Gloucester after his supposed death, working and paying taxes, Cranfield said.
Passing sentence on Friday, Judge Mark Horton said fake insurance claims were serious but that the couple had been less than sophisticated in their attempt and that no money had been lost.