Charges laid in alleged fraudulent automobile claim

Toronto, Ontario — December 29, 2014 — Charges have been laid in connection with an alleged auto insurance fraud that took place in Hamilton.

On February 14, 2014, Aviva Canada’s Fraud Information Centre received an anonymous tip about a collision involving Aviva Canada policyholder, Brenda Trembley. The caller indicated that Trembley was not driving her vehicle at the time of the collision, contrary to her report to the Hamilton Police Service and Aviva Canada. The tipster also indicated that she was covering for her uninsured daughter, the actual driver.

“Aviva Canada is extremely grateful to two callers to our Fraud Information Centre,” says Gordon Rasbach, Vice President of Aviva Canada’s Anti-Fraud unit. “The influx of public tips like these really highlights the concern of consumers in protecting their insurance rates.”

According to a statement from Aviva Canada, another tip was received by the Fraud Information Centre during the course of Aviva Canada’s investigation into the matter. The caller validated the original anonymous tip and explained that her motivation for calling was so that “good, upstanding people who follow the rules shouldn’t have to pay for people like Brenda Trembley.”

Aviva Canada says its investigation revealed that Trembley was not the driver at the time of collision and that she had coerced the driver of the other vehicle involved into going along with her story to cover for her uninsured daughter. Furthermore, in order to obtain a cheaper premium, Trembley had committed underwriting fraud by deliberately not disclosing that her daughter, a licensed driver, resided in her household.

In July 2014, after completing its investigation, Aviva Canada provided the office of the Chief of Police in Hamilton, ON with its findings. On December 5, 2014, Brenda Trembley, age 49, of Ancaster, Ontario was charged with Obstructing Justice and Fraud Over $5,000. She is scheduled to appear before a Hamilton court on January 15, 2015.

“We’re urging the public to be aware of those who may attempt to involve you in a potential fraud for their own selfish interests,” says Rasbach. “We frequently learn of attempts to falsify collision loss details when reported. It’s usually someone who has something to lose, as in this case, or alternatively, something to gain when it’s facilitated by disreputable automotive repair facilities and tow truck operators. What can seem like participating in someone’s white lie at the time may ultimately implicate you in criminal activity.”

Aviva Canada urges all Canadians to report potential fraud to Aviva Canada’s Fraud Information Centre via email or by calling the hotline at 855-332-5255.

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