Insurance Fraud Bureau says when police help fraud falls

The Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) has revealed its top 20 worst crash for cash hotspots while claiming that when police cooperate with insurers the crime can be reduced.

Luton, East London, Harrow and Walsall have all seen falls through police cooperation. Birmingham, Uxbridge and London North-West have all stabilised. But the IFB said: “Where the Police have yet to engage with the IFB, crash for cash activity is increasing, most notably in Liverpool, Halifax and Ilford & Barking.”

The IFB has 25 active joint Police operations across 13 Police forces and has been instrumental helping the Police make nearly 300 arrests. Three concluded joint Police operations have generated 29 convictions and combined custodial sentences of more than 20 years.

Nationally, organised ‘Crash for Cash’ network sizes have reduced by 11% over two years.

Hotspot March 2009 (December 2008 in brackets)

  • Bradford (2) 1
  • Blackburn (1) 2
  • Oldham (3) 3
  • Liverpool (7) 4
  • Huddersfield (5) 5
  • Birmingham (6) 6
  • Bolton (8) 7
  • Halifax 11 (8)
  • Uxbridge (9) 9
  • Luton (4) 10
  • Ilford and Barking (14) 11
  • Slough (10) 12
  • London East (12) 13
  • Harrow 13 (14)
  • Manchester (16) 15
  • Walsall (15) 16
  • London North (19) 17
  • Leeds (17) 18
  • Enfield (18) 19
  • London North-West (20) 20

John Beadle, chairman of the IFB said: “The criminal gangs targeting honest motorists are ruthless. Innocent lives are being put at risk and fraudulent insurance claims add approximately £40 to every premium paid by honest policy holders each year. Left unchecked these criminal networks grow rapidly, split and even franchise smaller networks which in turn grow prolifically. The key to success is collaboration between the insurance industry, Police, public bodies and the general public. The growing appetite of Police forces to prosecute these fraudsters is creating a real deterrent, as is the general public’s support in reporting suspected insurance fraud to the Bureau. We must continue to take a rigorous approach to dealing with this significant national problem that is impacting many towns and cities across the UK. Insurance fraud is not a victimless crime; criminals must be brought to justice.”