Prosecutors have re-examined their first witness in the ‘Independent three’ trial

Southwark Crown Court has again heard how Independent Insurance’s senior corporate management (read Bright, Condon and Lomas) delayed the recording of claims information, according to a prosecution witness.

This was inconsistent with Independent’s claims management guidelines, said Stuart Pettet former assistant general manager at Independent.

During re-examination of his witness, prosecutor Andrew Baillie QC established that Independent’s overall philosophy was to record immediately on computer systems any change in the circumstances of a claim. Pettet confirmed that this was often not the case because of controls enforced by the senior corporate team.

Pettet also reiterated the reasons for resigning in the summer of 2000. “I had some concerns about the way that claims were being managed,” he told the jury.

The jurors also heard that Pettet consulted a solicitor prior to his departure over fears that claims weren’t being recorded properly.

Later in the day, prosecution called its second witness to the stand. Michael Henry Watts worked for Independent between September 1991 and August 1999. Watts was promoted to assistant general manager in 1996 where he was responsible for commercial regional accounts.

Former Independent directors Michael Bright, Philip Condon and Dennis Lomas are all charged with conspiracy to defraud.

The trial continues.