Crash for cash foiled as trio are sen­tenced

Rochdale Observer - - YOUR VIEWS -

CUN­NING crash­for-cash fraud­sters used a kind ges­ture to make a false in­sur­ance claim.

Zahir Ali, 23, was driv­ing in Rochdale when he waved to a woman to al­low her to pull out of a junc­tion in front of him.

Po­lice said as she moved onto the road he de­lib­er­ately drove his ve­hi­cle into the vic­tim’s car at low speed near where York­shire Street meets Hal­i­fax Road.

The dam­age caused was min­i­mal and wit­nesses con­firmed that Zahir Ali was the only per­son in his car at the time. He left the scene of the crash alone.

Fol­low­ing the crash, Zahir Ali con­tacted a ve­hi­cle re­cov­ery com­pany and a so­lic­i­tors firm was also con­tacted.

He showed pho­to­graphs of the dam­age to his car to the owner of the re­cov­ery com­pany.

The owner de­cided the car was not road­wor­thy and ar­ranged for it to be re­cov­ered to an in­dus­trial unit.

An as­sess­ment of the dam­age by a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the In­sti­tute of Mo­tor­ing In­dus­try found that Zahir Ali’s car had sus­tained dam­age after the col­li­sion on No­vem­ber 16, 2016 which had caused it to be­come im­mo­bile.

Zahir Ali sub­mit­ted in­jury claims to the so­lic­i­tors firm for him­self, as well as Ah­san Ali and Huss­nain Ali on their be­half. At a med­i­cal ap­point­ment on Jan­uary 7, 2017, Zahir Ali and Ah­san Ali each claimed to be suf­fer­ing from back pain.

Huss­nain Ali at­tended a med­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tion on Fe­bru­ary 22, 2017 and claimed to be suf­fer­ing from shoul­der and neck pain. The doc­tor felt that these in­juries were all con­sis­tent with a car crash. He rec­om­mended fur­ther ex­am­i­na­tion by an orthopaedic sur­geon as well as six ses­sions of phys­io­ther­apy each.

But in June last year The City of Lon­don Po­lice’s In­sur­ance Fraud En­force­ment De­part­ment was alerted by in­sur­ers Hast­ings Di­rect about sus­pi­cions in­volv­ing the crash as wit­nesses said there was only one per­son in the car.

All three men were then in­ter­viewed by po­lice in Au­gust 2017.

At Manch­ester Crown Court in Min­shull Street, they were sen­tenced for con­spir­ing to de­lib­er­ately cause a crash in or­der to claim for in­juries and ve­hi­cle dam­age.

The three men were sen­tenced for con­spir­ing to de­lib­er­ately cause a crash in or­der to make a claim.

Zahir Ali, 23, of Al­bion Road, Rochdale, was sen­tenced to 12 months in prison, sus­pended for two years, and given 100 hours’ com­mu­nity ser­vice. Ah­san Ali, 24, of Durham Road, Brad­ford, and Huss­nain Ali, 30, of Vi­o­let Street, Hal­i­fax, were both sen­tenced to six months in prison, sus­pended for two years and given 70 hours’ com­mu­nity ser­vice.

All three men were also or­dered to pay £250 each in court costs.

De­tec­tive Con­sta­ble Kevin Hughes, of City of Lon­don Po­lice, said: “Zahir Ali took a kind ges­ture and used it to cre­ate a crash that only served his own greed and that of Ah­san and Huss­nain Ali. In­sur­ance fraud is not a vic­tim­less crime.

“When peo­ple com­mit in­sur­ance fraud, it drives up in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums for all con­sumers as fraud costs the in­sur­ance in­dus­try money.”

Paul Pri­estly, di­rec­tor of counter-fraud at Hast­ings Di­rect, said: “We are com­mit­ted to pro­tect­ing hon­est cus­tomers and we are there­fore very happy with the de­ci­sion of the court.

“Fraud­sters should see this as a clear mes­sage that we will take all ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tion to pur­sue and de­ter their ac­tions.”

●●Hal­i­fax Road, Rochdale, where a crash-for-cash scam was staged

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●●Falinge Park High School

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