Gang were involved in seven collisions and the organisation of a further 76

A ‘crash for cash’ gang has been found guilty for its involvement in seven collisions and the organisation of a further 76.

The trio - Nasir Mahmood, Aniela Chaudhry and Bernie Bautista - are now due to appear at Reading Crown Court for sentencing on 25 July.

At their trial the court heard how the trio used two vehicles driving in a convoy to induce the accidents, which took place in the Thames Valley and London area.

The first vehicle would make an erratic manoeuvre, causing the second vehicle to brake suddenly and an innocent road user collide with the rear of it.

Thames Valley Police Economic Crime Unit investigating officer detective constable Russell Prentice said: “Crash for cash fraud has an impact on the safety of everyday road users when fraudsters chose to deliberately cause traffic collisions for their own financial gain.

“Thames Valley Police will always undertake a complete, detailed and thorough investigation into persons who organise and participate in crash for cash fraud.”

In August 2012, police officers search the home of one of the convicted - Chaudhry - and found paperwork and handwritten notes that corresponded to a further 76 collisions.

Additionally, forensic evidence linked the material to Mahmood who was organising the collisions.

Latest figures from the ABI estimate the total value of detected insurance fraud is £1.3bn, which adds about £50 to the cost of household insurances.

IFB director Ben Fletcher said: “Crash for cash is a national problem that costs almost £400m each year and puts innocent road users in harm’s way.

“When the IFB was established in 2006 it was to focus on detecting and disrupting scams like this and today’s convictions send a clear message to would-be fraudsters that this crime will not be tolerated.”

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