HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Insurance fraud is the second most costly crime in Virginia, even if it isn't one you usually see happening.
It costs insurance companies, and it costs you. Virginia State Police say you pay an extra $1,000 a year for goods and insurance because it drives up insurance rates.
A State Police investigator won a Fraud Fighter Award recently for cracking a big case in Central Virginia.
The investigation centered on an office building on Mayland Drive in Henrico.
State Police Fraud investigator T.C. Collins says in 2012, Atuar Rhaman, who is not a doctor, had stolen the identity of a real doctor and submitted fake car accident claims to insurance companies. Collins knew he had him when he talked to the real doctor.
"I went and interviewed that doctor and he stated that he never treated those patients and that is not even the way he takes care of business in his medical records," explained Collins. "There was no medical business in there and he had two computers and he had people coming in and out."
Collins slapped Rhaman with 54 state warrants. Rhaman was convicted and is serving four years in a federal prison. A place, apparently, Rhaman is already used to.
"I spoke with the FBI and I found out he had just gotten out of federal prison for posing as an attorney," said Collins.
Collins says to look for signs to protect yourself from insurance fraud. He says when someone wants to settle a car accident in cash rather than file a police report, that can be a red flag. Collins says also be wary of a car full of people that suddenly stops in front of you.
If you suspect insurance fraud, call the Virginia State Police hotline at 1-877-62 FRAUD.