40 arrested in Gwent Police's Operation Dino, a 'crash for cash' probe

First published in News

FORTY people have now been arrested in a 'crash for cash' fraud probe.

Officers with Gwent Police's Operation Dino today announced they arrested six more people on suspicion of being involved in a ‘crash for cash’ operation which is believed to have operated out of a garage known as ‘St David’s Crash Repair’ which then changed name to ‘EASIFIX’.

The garages operated out of the same premises in Pengam, Blackwood, but are no longer trading, officers say. The arrests were made following an investigation into claims referred by insurers and the Insurance Fraud Bureau which had been identified as suspicious. The arrests are the latest stage of the operation which has seen 34 people arrested previously, all of whom remain on police bail.

The arrests were: a 33-year-old man from the Aberbargoed area; a 39-year-old woman from the Cardiff area; a 43-year-old man from the Cardiff area; a 70-year-old woman from the Cardiff area; a 59-year-old woman from the Cardiff area; and a 63-year-old man from the Caerphilly area.

They have all been arrested on suspicion of defrauding Insurance companies and have been bailed (until March 2013) pending further enquiries.

Detective Chief Inspector Jeremy Rogers who heads up Operation Dino which looks into motor insurance fraud said: “Motor Insurance fraud is not a victimless crime and law abiding motorists pick up the bill for fraudsters. Pre-planned scams cost the motor insurance industry and policyholders millions of pounds every year and our job is to bring those involved to justice.

“These arrests are the latest, but by no means final stage of our operation to dismantle a ‘crash for cash’ operating in Gwent. We suspect more people were involved and I would urge them to come forward and make contact with Gwent Police before we make contact with them.

“If you suspect anyone of committing insurance fraud, you can report them to the IFB’s free and confidential Cheatline on 0800 422 0421 or online at www.insurancefraudbureau.org/report.”

Ben Fletcher, Head of Operations at the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB), said: “These arrests mark a clear statement of intent from both the insurance industry and the police to tackle organised insurance fraud. The IFB continues to work alongside Gwent Police in investigating this criminal network in Wales. Around £50 is added to every premium to cover the costs of fraud, so honest policyholders ultimately pick up the bill for ‘crash for cash’ gangs motivated by greed.

“Unfortunately, ‘crash for cash’ scams are being plotted up and down the country. The IFB is currently managing 36 live Operations with police forces across the UK. The collective value of the scams under investigations tops £60 million. Fraudsters will be caught and will face the full force of the law.”

Those previously arrested were: a 25-year-old man from the Blackwood area; a 39-year-old man from the Tredegar area; a 25-year-old woman from the Bargoed area; a 42-year-old man from the Cardiff area; a 32-year-old man from the Maesycwmmer area; a 51-year-old man from the Aberbargoed area; a 31-year old-man from the Aberbargoed area; a 72-year-old man from the Aberbargoed area; a 32-year-old woman from the Blackwood area; a 69-year-old woman from the Bargoed area; a 42-year-old man from the Bargoed area; a 34-year-old man from the Hengoed area; a 29-year-old woman from the Maesycwmmer area; a 60-year-old woman from the Maesycwmmer area; a 29-year-old man from the Tredegar area; a 28-year-old woman from the Tredegar area; a 50-year-old man from the Cefn Forest area, a 42-year-old man from the Hengoed area; a 30-year-old woman from the Blackwood area; a 29-year-old man from the Blackwood are; a 35-year-old man from the Bargoed area; a 27-year-old man from the Blackwood area; a 39 year old man from the Cefn Forest area; a 23-year-old man from the Pontllanffraith area; a 31-year-old man from the Pontypridd area; a 40-year-old man from the Carphilly area; a 37-year-old woman from the Caerphilly area; a 30-year-old man of no fixed address, a 28-year-old man from the Aberbargoed area; a 38-year-old man from the Cardiff area; a 34-year-old man from the Pontllanffraith area, a 33-year-old man from the Hengoed area, a 46-year-old man from the Bargoed area; and a 22-year-old man from the Pontllanffraith area.

They were all arrested on suspicion of defrauding Insurance companies and also conspiracy to steal. They have been bailed (until March 2013) pending further enquiries.

 

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