Blogs

Caught on camera: the crooks who caused a crash to rip-off us all

Simon Read

crash 300x181 Caught on camera: the crooks who caused a crash to rip off us allThe moment when a crash-for-cash gang targeted an innocent victim by creating a motorway accident has been caught on tape. The shock scenes – see video below – were taken from the victim’s car and used in court to help convict the criminals. But the staged “accident”  is just one example of what is becoming the most common type of fraud in the UK, according to Aviva.

The insurer says motor injury fraud, now accounts for 54 per cent of Aviva’s total detected claims fraud costs. And more than half are from organised so-called “cash for crash” claims.

Organised fraud is often linked to wider gang-related crime – and puts innocent motorists at risk.

One of the more audacious staged accidents took placein Newcastle in 2009 when a mini-bus allegedly travelling from Newcastle to Edinburgh for a stag-event was supposed to have caused a collision with another car in a tunnel, resulting in alleged whiplash injuries to all occupants.

The scale of the injuries proportional to the supposed collision raised suspicions and further investigation by Aviva’s Special Investigations Unit and local Police was able to prove that the accident was entirely bogus.

Specifically, CCTV showed that the other vehicle involved in the accident wasn’t at the scene at all. Aviva also linked the driver and passenger of the other vehicle to the occupants of the mini bus through social media sites.

Instead of the reported collision, the mini bus had been deliberately damaged elsewhere and then taken to the scene of the incident, where debris was scattered and the accident “staged”.

Tom Gardiner, Head of Fraud at Aviva, said: “We are witnessing a trend toward third party, injury and organised fraud. For example, in 2013, we identified fraud in one in nine, third party injury claims.”

The insurance giant detected more than £110m-worth of insurance fraud in 2013 – a 19 per cent increase compared with 2012. It said it detects over 45 fraudulent claims per day worth more than a total of £300,000.

Tagged in: , , , ,
  • Bren10

    IMO the black car realised very late it was their exit , causing the blue car to brake, and the van/hgv was just TOO CLOSE. I don’t believe this ’scam’ angle being pushed by the insurance co. – could a different type of scam be at work here , namely, insurance co’s trying to push the blame off their insured (the video car here, who was driving TOO CLOSE ) onto the driver of the blue car that had to take avioding action ??

  • Sunday1Morning

    We’re back to Disqus?

    I made a load of comments on this article yesterday, and they’ve all vanished, along with the comments software I made them on.

  • Sunday1Morning

    This video is a very poor example, in fact I don’t think it’s a scam at all. The black car at the start suddenly brakes and shoots off left, over the hatchings, down the slip road. The driver of the blue car behind it, clearly has a wtf? moment, slams on his or her brakes to miss the black car, and stops dead. Meanwhile the driver of the truck with the dashcam fails to adequately read the road, because the fact that the blue car would stop was telegraphed a long time before it actually did, AND he is driving too fast and too close to stop.

    The blue car didn’t cut in from another lane and slam on its brakes, which is how the scammers operate, it was in the same lane all along. I’ve had a couple of experiences where someone has overtaken me, swooped in from the middle lane, and then braked – but I’ve avoided a collision by being aware of what is going on around me, ensuring that the gap is big enough (ie slowing down to make a gap between me and the lunatic that’s just cut in), or in one case, judicious use of the middle lane the idiot just came out of. I guess many years as a dispatch rider gave me a very much heightened awareness of what’s going on around me.

  • opusfra

    ‘to rip-off us all’ – I love reading the Indy. The journalists have such a command of the English language, and the editors are superb.

  • Right Field Ball

    Funny how over 90% of the “claimants” are Pakistani, a people known for their high levels of integrity…

  • Dick McLaughlin

    I seem to remember seeing this on a documentary a few months ago and the other was also involved.


Property search
Browse by area

Latest from Independent journalists on Twitter