One man’s fraud cost £1.6 million in insurance costs

How much could one person cost insurance companies by staging phony accidents? If a story in The Guardian is any indication, the answer is quite a bundle. According to the story, one huckster named Mohammed Patel in Manchester, England staged almost 100 crashes at the same roundabout – earning himself £500 for each accident and costing insurance companies £1.6 million.

Patel was sentenced to more than four years in jail for staging the accidents, most of which occurred at the same roundabout. He was caught after workers whose offices overlooked the intersection became suspicious because of the abnormal number of similar accidents that were taking place.

Prosecutor William Baker said Patel staged an elaborate series of accidents designed to defraud insurance companies.

“Mohammed Patel staged the road traffic accidents. He drove cars on to the roundabout and then stopped them so abruptly the vehicle behind could not avoid a collision.

Fraudulent claims, submitted by people not present at the scene whom Patel purported to be, were then made. Claims would include compensation for injuries such as whiplash, damage to the vehicle, a hire car, and storage of the damaged vehicle.”