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Crewe tops motor fraud increase list
MOTOR fraud in Crewe has more than doubled in the past year, according to a new survey.
The town saw a 260 per cent rise in 2012 – the highest increase in England and Wales.
Crewe far surpassed the second and third biggest increases: Medway in Kent, 145 per cent, and Leicester, 58 per cent.
The surge has seen Crewe enter the top 40 motor fraud hotspots for the first time.
The alarming statistics have been laid bare in the sixth annual motor fraud index, compiled by counter-fraud law firm, Keoghs.
Spokesman Justin Strong said: "Although Crewe is still a relatively lower risk than some other towns and cities in England and Wales, it is an indication of how the insurance fraud epidemic is spreading.
“There are a number of reasons for the year-on-year changes we have seen in the motor fraud Index, but one of the major trends has been the rise in fraudulent claims perpetrated by organised criminal gangs, known as fraud rings.
“We have seen the activity of such gangs spread beyond the major conurbations where they have historically operated, to smaller towns and cities and recently even into rural areas.”
The motor fraud index highlights the 24,000 suspect claims that Keoghs have been instructed to act upon by Britain’s top insurance companies.
James Heath, partner and director of counter-fraud at Keoghs, said: “This year’s results continue a trend we have seen over the past few years; an ongoing and alarming spread of fraudulent motor claims away from the more traditional hotspots we have historically seen across England and Wales.
“This has resulted in only relatively small areas of the UK being left unscathed by the problem of fraudulent insurance claims.”
Birmingham ranked number one on the list, accounting for 7.76 per cent of all suspect claims across England and Wales, followed by East London, Liverpool and Manchester.