Ghost broker pleads guilty to 18 counts of fraud

31 Jul 2019

Hastings Direct identified Imran Rafique’s fraudulent activity.

Ghost broker sentenced to 16 months imprisonment suspended for 18 months, 300 hours of community work, 3 months curfew and ordered to pay his victims back £8,000 plus court costs of £1,200.

Hastings Direct brought a prolific ghost broker to justice earlier this month following an investigation by its Special Investigations Unit (SIU) and the City of London Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED) that led to Imran Rafique pleading guilty to 18 counts of fraud at Birmingham Crown Court. The convicted ghost broker was sentenced to 16 months imprisonment (suspended for 18 months), 300 hours of community work, three months curfew and ordered to pay his victims back £8,000 as well as court costs of £1,200.  

In November 2016, Hastings Direct SIU identified a number of policies that had been incepted (the date the policy goes into effect) between January and October of the same year and identified that they were connected to each other.  After visiting the named policyholders to ascertain how they obtained their insurance policies, Hastings Direct identified Imran Rafique as the ghost broker.

Hastings Direct referred the matter to IFED, who conducted a criminal investigation during which other affected insurers were identified. The defrauded policyholders cooperated with the police who arrested and then charged Rafique.

Matthew Stevens, Hastings Direct Director of Counter Fraud, said “Too often, innocent members of the public are being deceived by this sort of activity.  I am delighted that this fraudster has been caught and held to account. Hastings Direct continues to invest in data, technology and people so that we identify such cases and take the necessary action to protect the innocent”.

Detective Constable Ant Andrews, who the led the investigation for IFED, added, “By selling fake car insurance, Rafique put both the victims and other drivers on the road at risk. Not only do ghost brokers like Rafique directly impact drivers, they also cause financial harm to the insurance industry, driving up the cost of insurance premiums for all motorists.

Thanks to the information provided by Hastings Direct, the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department’s investigation led to Rafique being convicted. This should act as a firm warning to fraudsters that IFED will catch you and you will face the consequences.”

 

NOTE TO EDITORS

Ghost broking – the tactic used by fraudsters who sell fraudulent car insurance by a number of different methods. The fraud is typically carried out by a number of ways: they will either forge insurance documents, falsify details to bring the premium price down, quote manipulation or take out a genuine policy, before cancelling it soon after to claim the refund plus the money given by the innocent party.

Source: IFED/Action Fraud