Tougher times ahead for disability car cheats

Cheats who abuse the Motability Car Scheme are in for a tougher time.

The warning comes as the disability car charity moves to fully implement changes following a review of the car scheme earlier this year.

During the last financial year, more than 7,000 allegations of fraud or abuse were investigated and action taken in over 2,000 cases. More than 800 customers had their leases terminated and their cars withdrawn.

The charity reached a milestone a couple of months back with the addition of its 3 millionth car, and Motability chairman Lord Sterling took the opportunity to hit back at confusion and criticism surrounding the scheme and its relationship with the government.

Lord Sterling said, “Following a number of recent press articles, I would first like to clarify the relationship between Motability and the Disability Living Allowance . DLA is a government benefit to help with the extra costs arising from disability. The Department for Work and Pensions determine who is eligible for DLA, based on an application completed by a disabled person.

“Motability is an independent charity and is not part of government. It has no role in determining who should receive DLA; that is solely the responsibility of the DWP. Once in receipt of the higher rate mobility component of DLA, the disabled person is able to join the Motability Scheme. When a customer applies to lease a car from the Motability Scheme, we confirm with the DWP that they are in receipt of the allowance for at least 12 months and therefore eligible to join the scheme.

“Motability has close to 600,000 cars on the road today. As the DWP recently stated, Motability plays a key role in ensuring that disabled people who most need help getting around and living a normal life can do so. At present, DWP is reforming DLA to ensure that those disabled people who most need this vital support continue to receive it. As we have done with every government over the last 33 years, we are working closely with the current government to ensure that Motability supports those disabled people with the greatest need.”

Lord Sterling conceded with any organisation with almost 600,000 customers there was always going to be a small minority who would try and abuse the scheme.

And he added, “Motability works with a range of partners, including for example motor dealers, the DVLA and the police, to ensure that effective procedures are in place to protect the scheme and to ensure that we respond effectively to all allegations of scheme misuse. During our last financial year, a number of steps were taken to further improve liaison with the police, including a memorandum of understanding signed with the Association of Chief Police Officers.

“Over this period, we dealt with 7,144 allegations relating to fraud or abuse of the scheme. These included cases of uninsured driving, unauthorised use of scheme cars, drink-driving and even criminal activity, many of which led to prosecution by the police.

“Enforcement action was taken by Motability in 2,139 cases, including 829 customers who had their agreements terminated and their cars withdrawn. In addition, 486 applicants were suspended or permanently excluded from the scheme. We will continue to invest in this activity to protect the reputation of the scheme and of the vast majority of our disabled customers.”

ECD Offering 15% Discount on Disposables

Stanmore, Middlesex, UK 10/03/2011 – Electronic Cigarette Direct, an online e-cigarette retailer featuring VAPESTICK brand products, has announced a special offer on disposable models which could save customers significant amounts of money. The special deal is in relation to their V1 disposable e-cigarette which is now available in a 10-count pack for just £85.00, a savings of 15% over the normal cost of buying each disposable unit separately.

Disposable e-cigarettes work exactly the same as refillable models except for the fact that when they are empty you simply throw them away. Just like their refillable counterparts they consist of a battery, atomiser unit, e-liquid, and a mouthpiece. As an added bonus, V1 electronic cigarettes utilize a glowing blue tip rather than orange or amber. In this way it is easier for others who might be around the user to understand tobacco is not being used.

For those unfamiliar with electronic cigarettes, these devices are quickly becoming one of the most popular alternatives to tobacco. They utilize a small atomiser unit, similar to a medical vaporizer, to transform nicotine-based liquid into a mist. When the electronic cigarette user inhales, he draws in this mist and then exhales water vapour. The best electronic cigarettes, like those made by VAPESTICK, produce a realistic mist cloud that not only looks like real smoke, but also provides the same throat hit and sensation as tobacco.

In the UK, electronic cigarettes are allowed in most places where tobacco is not. That means they are a great alternative for smokers who are negatively affected by the smoking ban. They also do not put off the thousands of toxic chemicals contained in tobacco, so others don’t have to worry about being poisoned by second hand smoke. They can be used in bars, pubs, restaurants, and even in the workplace.

Smokers who might be thinking of switching to electronic cigarettes should consider trying the V1 disposable from Electronic Cigarette Direct before investing in a starter kit. With ECD’s 15% discount on their 10-pack, now is the perfect time to give e-cigarette a try. Each disposable unit gives you the equivalent of 500 puffs which, depending on your smoking habits could equal up to 5-10 packs of tobacco cigarettes. To learn more about the V1 disposable visit the ECD website at

About Electronic Cigarette Direct

Electronic Cigarette Direct was founded by former smokers who turned to electronic cigarettes as an alternative to tobacco. These individuals are now full-time e-cigarette users who have extensively tested many of the leading brands on the market. They have chosen the VAPESTICK brand because they believe it most accurately simulates the smoking experience without the toxic chemicals associated with tobacco. In addition to disposable e-cigarettes, the company also sells refillable units, starter kits, couples packs, chargers, and charger packs. Company officials are available to answer your questions or provide you with more information. Feel free to contact them at:

Electronic Cigarette Direct
85a Stanmore Hill,
Middlesex, UK
Telephone: +44 (0) 800 011 4324

Top 10 Insurance Scams

Many customers across the UK have been scammed into buying payment protection policies. The Financial Services Authority expressed concern that thousands of Brits have been mis sold payment protection insurance and because of this, the high street banks must now shell out millions of pounds in compensation pay-outs to its customers.

Fraud and insurance scams costs the UK £30.5 billion a year and dishonest insurance claims alone cost around £2 billion a year which adds an extra £44 per year to every household’s general insurance budget.

As consumers up and down the country seek to get their money back which was wrongly taken, the PPI Claims Company can reveal the top insurance scams that have caught media headlines for being daft and those dodgy cons that have failed.

‘Cash for crash’

In April 2011 39 members of a Luton gang were involved in a £5.3 million ‘cash for crash’ insurance scam; the largest fraud ring the industry has ever seen.

cash for crash

The case, called Operation Exhort, involved a five year investigation by Bedfordshire Police and three defendants from the criminal enterprise resulted in being jailed. A further 33 defendants pleaded guilty to a variety of offences in connection to the insurance scam.


Law graduates accuse Brazil of mugging

In August 2009 two law grads scamBritish law graduates confessed to a false insurance scam in Brazil in which they claimed they were robbed.

Graduates Shanti Andrews and Rebecca Turner claimed they were mugged of their laptop, purse, mobile phone and digital camera during a bus journey in Brazil to pocket an insurance pay-out.

But the 23 year-olds later went on trial and admitted to charges of attempted insurance fraud. The pair were sentenced to community service and fined £3,900.


Fraudster shot himself as part of a string of scams

fraudster scam

In March 2011, an insurance fraudster shot himself in the chest to claim money in compensation. It was only after he confessed that he was the gunman, that it was revealed he has created a string of scams over the past 16 years.

In 1995 he claimed to have been shot by an air rifle and won £2,500 in compensation; in 2004 he won £1,750 after claiming he had been accidently stabbed by a family member; and in 2006 he received £5,600 after falsely claiming he had slipped in a public toilet in Corwen, in Wales.

Amateur footballer scammed insurer out millions

In April 2011 an unprofessional footballer was jailed for a year after trying to scam an insurer out of millions of pounds.footballer scam

James Shikell was involved in a car accident in 2002 and won £30,000 in compensation from the Motor Insurers’ Bureau. He claimed his injuries were so severe that he required a further £1.35 million in damages to cover loss of earnings and care costs but a private investigator filmed him playing a football game “vigorously and competitively”.

Shikell’s father was also sentenced for one year for his part in supporting the fraudulent claim and a footballing teammate was fined for making a false statement.

Canoe Man Disappears

In 2002, John “Cancanoe man scamoe” Darwin made headlines with the most outrageous insurance scam ever.  The father faked his own death in a canoe so his wife could claim £680,000 from pensions and insurance companies.

The 60 year-old conman was so desperate to wipe his crippling debts he decided to paddle to his ‘death’ and ‘drown’ at sea, resulting in a six-year jail sentence and the grief of his two sons.


Best pals stage car crash insurance scam

friends car crash scam

In July 2010, two pals staged a car crash to cheat an insurance company out of £11,400.

Best friends Katie Ashcroft, 24, and Jodie Jackman, 23, faked that they had been in an accident and arranged for a ‘Mr Fixit’ to crash their cars into each other before ringing their insurance companies to falsely claim.

Friends and family members pretended to be passengers in the cars and filed fake injury claims. The scam was only exposed when emails between the pair were found.

OAPs kill homeless men to collect millions in life insurance

Some pensioners from California, America were convicted in 2008 in a murder scam.

oaps scam

The OAPs, Helen Golay (73) and Olga Rutterschmidt (50) were put behind bars after killing two homeless men and collecting millions of pounds in life insurance.

Golay was found guilty of the murders in 1999 and in 2005 and sentenced to a life sentence; whereas her accomplice was convicted of conspiring to murder for financial gain.  The trial was known as the trial of the Black Widows.

Conman shattered girlfriend’s leg for £100k compensation

conman scamIn 2007 a conman deliberately broke his girlfriend’s leg to claim £100,000 insurance.

Gordon Thomon, 32, left his fiancée Elizabeth Hingston, 24, in agonising pain in a sick stunt that involved him putting a brick under her left limb and jump on it with both feet.

The pair planned to sue the council and claim a wall had fallen on her as part of the bogus scam but were rumbled when the scheme was filmed on a mobile phone.

Thomson pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

Eight People Convicted Over Motor Scam Worth Thousands

In April 2011, emotor scamight people were convicted for their part in a car insurance fraud scam worth tens of thousands of pounds.


Five men and three women were sentenced at Leicester Crown Court following an investigation into fraudulent claims related to damage and injuries resulting from four collisions in Leicester and Birmingham.

The ringleader, who was involved in setting up one of the false collisions, even set up a fraudulent claims company as part of the scam. The conspirators netted nearly £50,000 which would have doubled had the police not rumbled the scheme.

Doctor accused of involvement in £4 million insurance fraud case

In April 2011, a GP doctor in Harrow, Great London appeared before a trial accused of fraud estimadoctor scamted to total around £4 million.

Dr Lawrence Martin Adler, of Belmont Health Care, has been alleged of being involved in “after the event” insurance claims relating to personal injury accidents.

The 58-year-old appeared at Southwark Crown Court alongside five other defendants, a solicitor and insurance workers as part of an on-going investigation.

Case Study: AC Investor Blog – A Great Place to Learn

The stock market is not for beginners. It takes years of skill, foresight, and intense determination to succeed at this masterful game of current market prediction and to accurately provide Stock Signals.

As a 37 year old part-time trader, Antonio Costa has been actively trading stocks for almost two decades, all without the assistance of computer software. Costa started AC Investor Blog as a way to improve his skills as a trader and also share his thoughts on the market.

The goal today is still to share valuable stock trading advice with readers. Costa invites readers to ask questions or share comments on the blog, as well as subscribing to an informative newsletter for free – there’s even a Twitter feed.

The website is intended for the education of online stock traders. The information provided therein is not to be construed as recommendations to buy or sell stocks of any kind. All investors should consult a qualified professional before trading any stock. Antonio Costa is not an investment advisor. Any investments, trades, and/or speculations made in light of the ideas, opinions, and/or forecasts made are committed at the reader’s own risk, financial or otherwise.

Claim Back Bank Charges And Mis-Sold PPI To Pay For Misused Mobile Phone Bills

New research has revealed that many Brits are misusing their mobile phone deals and in fact are losing out hundreds of pounds a year.

Findings by Billmonitor, a price comparison calculator site, show that the majority of British people are wasting their prized money by being on the wrong mobile phone deal or underusing their mobile plans.

By claiming back bank charges and mis-sold payment protection insurance with the help of Claims Management Specialists, this can help pay towards the costly monthly mobile phone bills. Win back thousands of pounds like many individuals across the UK are doing; which will definitely cover the expensive expenditure.

The average person spends £439 in 12 months on their mobile phone; and further findings reveal that three in four people are blowing away on average £200 every year simply by being on the wrong mobile phone deal.

The survey, which analysed more than 28,000 phone bills, showed that more than £5 billion is being wasted per year. So help relieve the finances and pay for your expensive mobile phone by claiming back money from mis-sold ppi and bank charges.

The study showed that the biggest issue was people paying for contracts that offered them more free minutes than they used so in effect they were wasting money. Also, a substantial number of Brits were underestimating their phone usage and therefore going over their limits and being billed hefty charges.

However, these people are not switching plans due to confusion about companies and availability and it is no surprise seeing as there are currently more than eight million various payment plans and mobile phone deals on offer.

March shows unexpected fall in inflation

Inflation figures for March showed an unexpected drop for the first month since last July, easing some of the building pressure on the Bank of England to increase interest rates.
The consumer price inflation figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed a drop from a 4.4 per cent inflation spike in February, to 4.0 per cent in March.  The drop surprised many analysts who had been expecting either no change, or a more modest reduction.
The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, which is responsible for setting the bank’s base interest rates, has come under increasing pressure in recent months to raise rates to help control spiralling inflation.  March’s drop in inflation will help reduce this pressure – however despite this apparent sign of improvement, inflation remains twice the Bank’s stated target level of 2 per cent.
Investec economist Philip Shaw said:  “It should help to stave off a rate rise in May.  But while this is welcome, this is just one battle in what will be a long tussle.  It’s still possible inflation will rise to 5 per cent over the course of the year.”
The Bank of England’s most recent decision to hold interest rates at 0.5 per cent contrasted with a decision the same day by the European Central Bank to increase its rates in direct response to inflationary pressures.
March’s fall in consumer price inflation appears to have been primarily driven by a drop in the costs of food and non-alcoholic drinks.  The ONS said this reflected “supermarket led sales”.  It also remarked on downward pressure on inflation from the cost of recreation goods (including games, toys and hobbies) and air transport, which had seen fares rise by less than a year ago.


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Zapproved announces closing of USD1.45m Series B investment

Software provider Zapproved Inc announced on Monday that it has closed a USD1.45m Series B investment led by a group of technology executives and established investors

Software provider Zapproved Inc announced on Monday that it has closed a USD1.45m Series B investment led by a group of technology executives and established investors

The company said the investment round will enable it to meet the growing demand for its Legal Hold Pro product, which manages legal hold notification and compliance.

Zapproved added that it will also be able to expand the product lines on its compliance platform.

Participants in the investment round included: Steven Singh, CEO of Concur Technologies Inc, an on-demand service provider of integrated travel and expense management solutions; Mark Stevens, former General Partner at Sequoia Capital; Skip Walter, founding CEO and CTO of Attenex Inc; Allen Alley, former CEO and Chair of Pixelworks; Kanth Gopalpur, General Manager and President of Monsoon Commerce; and Raj Kulkarni, founder of GemStone Systems, recently acquired by the leasing virtualization vendor VMware, according to Zapproved.