THE NATIONAL criminal agency has uncovered a group of seven people who filed fraudulent claims worth €775,000 with an insurance company over fictitious car accidents.

The police have charged the people with insurance fraud, and have already detained six of them. The group cheated the insurer in 70 cases, the SITA newswire reported on May 22.

The fraudsters damaged the cars with axes, hammers and fork lifts, and even drove cars into trees to make it look like an accident had occurred, for which they would claim damages.

According to police, the group also collaborated with employees of the insurer, who, however, have yet to be accused of anything, as they are cooperating with the police investigation.

If found guilty, the accused could spend 10-15 years behind bars. Members of the group have already been prosecuted for tax fraud.