Georgia Auto Fraud Ringleader Arrested

October 30, 2009

Georgia officials say they have arrested the ringleader in a fraud ring operating in Savannah, that collected nearly $95,000 from six insurance companies by staging accidents and filing bogus claims.

Insurance Commissioner John W. Oxendine said Joseph T. Morris Jr., 29, was arrested and charged with three counts of insurance fraud and two counts of making false statements.

According to an investigation by Oxendine’s office, 16 claims filed by Morris involved vehicles he owned or previously owned and people he was already associated with. Title histories show Morris sold vehicles to other parties who were then involved in “accidents” that he filed claims on.

The companies that were defrauded include AIG/ 21st Century, Allstate, GMAC, Mercury Insurance, SafeCo and Travelers.

Oxendine said Morris was already on federal probation.

Insurance fraud is a felony with a penalty of two to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.

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