A Ville Platte, La., man recently was convicted on charges of insurance fraud and theft related to alleged staged traffic accidents.
On Nov. 29, 2007, a six person jury in the 15th Judicial District Court of Lafayette Parish found Kenneth Wayne Guillory, 32, of the 1100 block of Abraham Street, Ville Platte, guilty of one count each of Insurance Fraud and Theft, the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office and the Louisiana State Police Insurance Fraud and Auto Theft Unit said.
Guillory was arrested in June 2005. State troopers believed Guillory, Danielle Frilot Clark and Angelina Jack, also of Ville Platte, planned and intentionally staged a traffic crash in Lafayette Parish for the sole purpose of filing fraudulent bodily injury claims.
Although the jury acquitted Guillory of actually being involved in the pre-planning of the crash, troopers say he filled his Ford Taurus with as many as two other adults and five children then targeted and intentionally slammed on his brakes in front of a commercial van driven by an elderly man.
The resulting three vehicle collision endangered the lives of several unsuspecting people, including a pregnant woman and her one year old infant – not to mention the children in Guillory’s vehicle.
The elderly man driving the commercial vehicle was injured as a result of the crash and was never able to return to work. To date, the total monetary loss incurred by three different insurance companies is estimated at over $105,000.00.
Staged or caused traffic crashes are at the core of many vehicle related insurance fraud schemes and there are many variations. Vehicle related insurance fraud creates an unnecessary financial and emotional burden on unsuspecting drivers, vehicle owners, law enforcement, health care workers and facilities, insurance companies, insurance policyholders, and consumers, in general.
It is not uncommon for individuals involved in staged or caused traffic crash schemes to use minor children or persons with pre-existing injuries as pawns to inflate the value of their insurance claim. In addition, suspects frequently target commercial vehicles because those vehicles are more likely to be heavily insured.
Guillory faces possible imprisonment of up to five years at hard labor or a $5,000 fine, or both, for committing Insurance Fraud and up to 10 years at hard labor or a $3,000 fine, or both, for committing Theft. The other two defendants, Clark and Jack, will be tried in March 2008.
Source: Louisiana State Police
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