GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Thirteen people were arraigned in Franklin Superior Court Friday afternoon as part of a massive insurance fraud ring.
The individuals are all from the New York City area. They range in age from 32 to 64 years old. Not guilty pleas were entered on their behalf.
A total of 38 people were indicted in connection with this insurance fraud ring. They’re accused of registering their cars at false addresses in Northampton, Easthampton and Greenfield while living in New York.
According to Steven Gagne, A.D.A. Northwestern D.A.’s office, “When it comes to insurance fraud, at least in western Massachusetts, in my knowledge this is perhaps the largest ring that has been busted at least in recent memory. We have close to 40 individual’s total.
The scheme allegedly went on for six years with hundreds of thousands of dollars in premiums avoided.
“My understanding is on average it is a third to half the expense here in western Mass. as it would be in the metropolitan area in some instances higher. It depends on the type of vehicle, depends on the driver history but it’s a substantial reduction,” said Gagne.
Members of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement were also on hand for Friday’s arraignment. The defendants are scheduled to return to court October 29th.