AN UNEMPLOYED Gravesend man got drunk and hanged himself because his sickness benefits had been cut, an inquest heard.

Victor Cuff, 59, of Medhurst Crescent, was found dead in his bedroom by neighbour and good friend Colleen Gobel on May 22 this year.

The 64-year-old had called the police after noting she had not seen Victor that day.

She told police Mr Cuff, who had had problems with depression in the past, had been "feeling down" and having money troubles after his sickness benefits were reduced.

A post-mortem examination carried out at Darent Valley Hospital on May 29 found the alcohol in Mr Cuff's blood was four times the legal limit for driving and enough to induce coma.

Detective Sergeant James Greenidge, of North Kent Police, was called to the ground-floor flat at 6.11pm.

He told the inquest: "He was lying in bed and it appeared he hanged himself.

"There was evidence he was a drunk."

Coroner Roger Hatch recorded a verdict of suicide.