Metroline has successfully defended and exposed a fraudulent ‘crash for cash’ claim for damages and personal injury made against it by two claimants.
At the County Court in Central London solicitors acting for Metroline were successful in dismissing the claims from Mr F Chalfoun and Master J Chalfoun. Judge Roberts dismissed the claim against the operator and awarded Metroline costs, concluding in his judgment: “The claimant deliberately stopped in front of the bus with the intention of causing an accident. [And] that the claimant’s evidence is a catalogue of lies from beginning to end.”
The claim related to an incident on 20 October 2015 along the A219 in Hammersmith. On-board CCTV captured Mr Chalfoun deliberately stopping in front of a Metroline Bus, forcing a collision with the back of his Jaguar. Mr Chalfoun’s 13 year-old son and friend were in the car at the time of the collision.
Commenting on the judgement, David Marriot, Metroline head of claims, adds: “We are pleased with the outcome and want to send a very clear message that we will challenge all fraudulent claims made against us. Where costs of claim are made in our favour, these will be vigorously enforced.
“Mr Chalfoun’s actions were not only fraudulent but incredibly dangerous, putting himself, his passengers, everyone on our bus and other road users all seriously at risk. They also add a considerable and unnecessary strain to the emergency services, police and courts.”
Metroline’s transport safety team cooperated extensively with the police during the investigation and were able to provide clear and detailed CCTV of the event which was corroborated by witnesses.
During the court proceedings, it emerged that Chalfoun had a history of making personal injury claims as a result of collisions. Judge Roberts added: “[The] claimant’s dishonesty is deliberate, goes to the root of the whole of his claim and that his claim is fundamentally dishonest.”
According to the Insurance Fraud Bureau, staged ‘crash for cash’ incidents cost the UK £340million every year. Metroline is currently pursuing other fraudulent cases in the courts.