Ten criminals engaged in motor car insurance fraud in Peterborough have recently been sentenced after being caught staging car crashes.
The fraudsters, who managed to milk car insurance companies out of almost £100,000, were so adept that they were able to even deceive doctors that they had suffered whiplash in these falsified accidents. Ali Askher, the leader of the scammers, was given a three and a half year jail sentence in Peterborough Crown Court after judges heard how the criminals fraudulently took £93,000 in payments from insurers.
Prosecutor Mike Magee told the court that these offences have gone beyond harming discount car insurance providers, as insurers have no choice but to pass these losses on to honest motorists living in Peterborough, which means higher premium prices to these drivers. Mr Magee informed the court how the ringleader operated two Peterborough claims management firms, encouraging relatives and friends to both fabricate crashes and exaggerate claims.
The court was informed that in several instances, the defendants drove their cars outside city limits before deliberately damaging them and then claiming the damage had actually taken place in incidents within Peterborough. The ‘crashes’ began on 26 October 2006 and continued for at least the next six months, with an additional two falsified accidents occurring on 12 December and then 26 February of the following year.
The claims vary from completely falsified accidents to grossly exaggerated injuries to drivers and passengers in staged incidents. Some ‘accidents’ featured passengers that were not actually present at the time of the crash, while others were found to have been driving without insurance but instead reported the name of a spouse as the individual operating the motor vehicle at the time of the crash.