Director Found Guilty For Attempting To Loot £405k From Aviva
There various levels of crime; whether it is insurance fraud or a bugler, a crime is still a crime, and it doesn't matter the shape or form it takes.
For Edward Camborne De Lucy, he would have thought that he would get away with theft like all criminals do, but little did he know that the strong arm of justice would fall on him sooner rather than later.
The company director has been sentenced to jail for doctoring papers in an attempt to steal £405k from Aviva.
The 44-year old from Kent was found guilty and charged by Woolwich Crown Court.
He was found guilty of making article used in fraud as well as fraud by false representation. The court ordered him to pay £40,054 (compensation, victim surcharge, and court costs all-inclusive). He was also sentenced to a prison term of 18 months.
"We are happy with the outcome of the court's verdict," said Tom Gardiner, head of fraud at Aviva. "We are happy he [De Lucy] got up to 18 months. This shows that insurance fraud is no joke, and it is a serious crime. The result is that it increases premiums for genuine customers."
Gardiner further explained that De Lucy's case pushed his firm to the edge, and they suffered greatly for it. " We suffered a genuine loss which was spiked up by the fact that he tried to inflate his policy with Aviva by £200k."
Read The Small Detail
De Lucy would have had his way if not for a small detail. In his claim to Aviva, De Lucy stated that 157 display screens his company installed in a sports club were extremely damaged by a storm. He said the display screens cost £428,679 in total.
He proceeded to make small changes to a form of acceptance he had previously used in an attempt to bypass his policy claim limit. These small changes would have seen him gain £405k, albeit falsely.
However, Aviva sensed something wasn't right and decided to send the case to the City of London Police Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department for proper investigation.
The insurance company’s loss adjusters on examining the display boards agreed that they were indeed extremely damaged; however they stressed that De Lucy had a policy limit of £200,000 for his claim.
After this, the adjusters received an email from De Lucy's accountant with a form of acceptance for £405,142, requesting for a progress report on the claim.
The form of acceptance had De Lucy's signature on it, and it appeared to have been created by the loss adjusters. However, when the adjusters examined it, they found a unique Aviva claim reference number. Now, this number was linked to a previous theft claim hat De Lucy had tried previously.
This past claim was handled by the same loss adjuster and was settled for around £9,792.
It was this tiny detail that showed that De Lucy was using a past acceptance of form instead of the one for his new claim.