3rd February 2016
Facing up to the challenge of fraud rings
Thank you for reading this second edition of TGC Fraud Update, a publication which was set up with the stated aim of facilitating the sharing of information about decided claims involving issues of road traffic fraud and related matters. Thank you also for all of the kind words and helpful feedback received about the inaugural edition.
Some of the trickiest types of fraud cases to defend at trial are those involving fraud rings- linked cases involving several separate purported road traffic accidents featuring the same or overlapping personnel (sometimes organised criminals, albeit frequently caught out by their disorganisation!) and usually deliberately staged, contrived or induced accidents. Often there is an overall ‘guiding mind’ linking seemingly unrelated incidents, be it an individual, an accident management or hire company or even a firm of solicitors.
However, one of the challenges that arises is that intelligence can never be perfect and often the identities of some of thedramatis personaewill never be known (this may well often be because they do not exist). Often the fraud ring cases that do reach trial are those where the links between the claims and the claimants are at their most oblique- direct evidence of communication and co-operation between individuals who claim not to know each other is usually enough to scare off even the most stubborn claimant solicitors!
As with most rapidly developing areas of law, information about the outcome of decided claims, and more importantly the reasons behind them, is a great way equipping oneself to best tackle future claims where the same or similar issues are raised. Fortunately, TGC has had a glut of fraud rings successfully defended to trial in the last couple of months- the lead article focusses on the particular challenges posed (and duly overcome) in some of these cases. It can be seen that thorough preparation is critical, as these types of cases are invariably ‘document heavy’, but also that there is no substitute for demolishing the credibility of a suspect individual through robust cross-examination.
The TGC fraud team are more than happy for you to contact them if you have any queries about any of the contents of this issue, or indeed about any other issues relating to insurance fraud and related matters.