Dozens of drivers were thought to be involved in the offences that took place between 2019 and 2020 (Picture: Rex)
Supermarket giant Tesco has been targeted in a ‘cash for crash’ fraud that saw delivery drivers staging accidents so scammers could claim millions from the franchise.
It is alleged that around a dozen Tesco drivers were involved in the scam.
The ‘victims’ of the crashes would then send Tesco a hefty bill to cover the loss of value to vehicles, personal injuries, and to pay for a hire car.
The company eventually clocked on when investigators discovered the claimants had cars repaired at garages that were registered at the same address.
Several of the claimants also used the same solicitor.
The scandal came to light when Tesco began taking the conspirators to county court (Picture: Getty)
Tesco’s lawyers have estimated that the conspiracy involves more than a hundred people.
In what has been described as one of the UK’s largest civil fraud trials, Tesco has begun suing drivers and their co-conspirators in 32 separate cases in county court.
Judge Heather Baucher has ordered the perpetrators to repay the costs incurred by Tesco, as well as a £18,000 surcharge in exemplary damages.
Tesco has been awarded almost £400,000 in cumulative damages in nine cases so far.
It is believed that the final reward will be ‘considerably higher’.
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A spokeswoman for Tesco said the company welcomed the judges’ decision, but declined to comment further.
Former Tesco delivery driver, Manish Parmar earned around £10 an hour when the incidents took place, in 2019 to 2020.
Parmar was involved in five staged accidents over a six month period, after he was approached by two men, ‘Nik’ and ‘Dee’.
The pair persuaded him to crash his van into a decided car for £200 per hit, a considerably larger sum than his hourly wage.
‘Nik and Dee’ would then attend the crash scene, and fill out details on a ‘bump card’, Tesco’s collision report form.
Insurance Fraud Bureau director Ursula Jallow said these types of scams cost insurers millions of pounds, which is ultimately paid by consumers.
Speaking to Metro.co.uk, Tesco said: ‘We welcome the decision of the judge at the Central London County Court, but cannot comment any further on an ongoing legal matter.’
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