Two London men have been jailed for their part in a fraud ring that claimed £3m for a string of bogus motor “accident” claims in the London area between 2005 and 2007.

Ahmad Bolkhari-Ghahi, 24, and Hussein Hassani, 29, both of notorious crime-hotspot no fixed abode, received custodial sentences at Blackfriars Crown Court on 18 March ‚ though Hassani decided attending court might be ill-advised and stayed away. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.

The men were apprehended followed an 18-month joint operation by the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) and City of London Police (CoLP) codenamed Operation Hydra.

The IFB contacted detectives after its members identified multiple claims showing similar features such as addresses, mobile phone numbers and bank accounts and multiple bogus insurance policies created with more than 20 insurers.

Judge Daniel Worsley described the gang’s work as a  cunning, sophisticated and meticulously planned motor insurance fraud.” Whether and how Bolkhari-Ghani acknowledged the compliment is not recorded.

John Beadle, Chairman of the Insurance Fraud Bureau said: “This shows the positive results that can be achieved by the insurance industry and law enforcement working in unison. Our industry is no longer an easy target for these criminals and we are determined to protect our honest customers.

Bolkhari-Ghahi was jailed for three years and four months. Four years in prison await Mr Hassani as and when he turns up again.

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