FBI indicts 23 people on claims of auto insurance fraud


Aaron Doucett

Police like these were the first to suspect wrongdoings in the string of suspicious crashes from 2017-2020. Photo by Aaron Doucett on Unsplash

Aiden Bonilla

The individuals involved allegedly faked 14 different car crashes over a 3-year span, with the incidents taking place in Canada, as well as the Northern and Western U.S. Over 138 charges have been filed against the group, including health insurance and mail fraud. In total, the faked car crashes supposedly netted the group almost 1 million dollars in total after cashing in on the insurance. While 22 of the members were charged with fraud, the last member Mohammed Naji Al-Jibory was only accused of obstructing justice, as he is alleged to have lied to FBI investigators regarding the nature of the crashes.

The group was supposedly able to artificially create minor crashes, before using hammers to damage the cars much further before authorities were able to arrive. Another tactic they used was to strap heavy objects, such as a case of bottled water, into the seats so that the airbag would deploy, as well as forcing down the gas pedal so that there would be no need for potential danger. Even though they often were not hurt, the individuals allegedly would still contact hospitals and try to get money from these fake claims. 

These incidents were supposedly preplanned, with most of them taking place between two isolated vehicles on remote roads, usually late at night or early in the morning, meaning that there were no other witnesses for these events besides the members of the group.

All but six of these individuals who have appeared in court have pleaded not guilty. Four of the members of the group have not been located, and the FBI currently has warrants out for their arrest. These are supposedly Ahmad K. Bachay, Hussain K. Bachay, Mashael A. Bachay and Farooq S. Yaseen. Two other members have yet to appear in front of a judge and plead their cases.