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Resource ID: #17374
Subject: Fraud
Source: Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
Date: Dec. 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, follow-ups Jan. 9, 2001



A Sun-Sentinel series explores the dimensions of auto-insurance fraud in Florida. The investigation finds that "phony crash rings ... operate throughout the state." The stories showcase the main players and their scenarios, and concludes that "even when they are caught, most avoid prison time." A key finding is also that "chiropractors and medical clinics that specialize in traffic accident injuries routinely have paid cash for new patients...and have submitted phony or padded billings to auto insurers. " Lawyers and testing brokers are also exposed as participants in the vicious circle. The reporters reveal that the state officials in charge are reluctant to handle the problem. For example, "Florida's Division of Insurance Fraud ... actually closes more than 90 percent of its investigations without an arrest," and "the state's Board of Chiropractic Medicine routinely permits chiropractors convicted of insurance fraud to continue practicing..."

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