X Factor’s Wagner ‘could face benefits probe’

X Factor finalist Wagner could face an investigation over claims he falsely claimed incapacity benefit, the Work and Pensions secretary has said.

Speaking on Sky News’ Sunday Live With Adam Boulton, Iain Duncan Smith said that the Brazilian will be “asked to come in and explain himself” to officials after previously saying he was unable to work because of a frozen shoulder.

The 54-year-old told producers he was receiving the payments before he appeared in the live shows.

“One of the people who was working on his case, I understand this, I don’t know precisely, noticed Wagner was managing to leap in the air with his arms held above him,” Mr Duncan Smith said.

“I am told he had a frozen shoulder and they tend to mean you can’t have your arm in the air; it’s impossible and therefore you are off work.

“I expect he will be asked to come in and explain himself as to why he was on benefits in the first place,” the MP added.

“If you don’t mind me saying so, Wagner’s case illustrates the biggest problem we have got, which is incapacity benefit has grown like mad.”

Wagner – who was less than popular with the judges but attracted a loyal audience following for his flamboyant performances – was voted off the show in last weekend’s quarter-final. The results of this weekend’s semi-final will be revealed on Sunday night.