December 8, 2003 by Canadian Underwriter
Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI) is welcoming a judgement by the province’s courts to hand a jail term to a man convicted of fraud against the public auto insurer.
John Francis Lucas, 50, was given a two-year sentence for fraud under $5,000 by Judge Glen Joyal. The judge noted that the sentence should send a message that insurance fraud is a serious crime, says MPI. Lucas was also ordered to pay restitution of $2,873 to MPI.
“Fraud is not a victimless crime,” says Randy Bell, manager of MPI’s special investigation unit (SIU). “This recent conviction sends a clear message that fraud will not be tolerated by the justice system. Nor should it be tolerated by honest rate payers.”
The charges against Lucas stemmed from a November, 2001 accident in which Lucas was driving pizza deliveries. He claimed income replacement benefits, saying he could not work due to injuries sustained in the minor accident. MPI’s SUI investigated and told the court Lucas was witnessed delivering flyers door-to-door.