Leading insurance industry law firm, Horwich Farrelly and motor insurer, Esure, have been rewarded for their unrelenting pursuit of fraudulent behaviour. Mr. Kamran Akram, a former Director of Asons Solicitors, which had already been found to be operating fraudulently, lost his practice certificate as a result and was ordered to pay Esure costs of £250,000.
Horwich Farrelly has been determined to take a zero tolerance approach to insurance fraud in all its forms, but especially the activities of ‘professional enablers’, and this latest case is a particularly significant result for the wider insurance sector and honest policyholders, following a long battle against Asons Solicitors.
Horwich Farrelly has previously won cases against the former Bolton-based Asons Solicitors, which was shut down by the Solicitors Regulation Authority in 2017. That year Horwich Farrelly dealt a blow to the firm after a judge ruled a claimant solicitor had made “gross failures” in handling a personal injury claim in which key documents were found to contain forged signatures. In 2019 Horwich Farrelly also secured the committal of Haroon Karim, the former director of multiple claims management agencies/hire companies who worked with Asons Solicitors. Karim was found guilty of contempt of court and sentenced to six months imprisonment.
Mr. Kamran Akram is the latest ‘professional enabler’ involved with Asons Solicitors that Horwich Farrelly, along with Esure, has successfully removed from the industry. Although Asons Solicitors was closed in 2017, its director, Mr. Akram, did not lose his licence to practice law and was therefore able to continue presenting fraudulent claims.
The latest case against Mr. Akram (Esure Services Ltd vs. Shamim Lohar and Kamran Akram) was heard at the High Court of Justice on 4th and 5th February 2020. The personal injury claim, made in 2015 following a 2013 road traffic accident, was found to be fraudulent on a number of counts. The claim included a fabricated claim for medical treatment valued at over £6,000.
The claim was supported by a number of documents which were shown to be false and which could be traced back to Mr. Akram. This claim formed part of a much wider conspiracy in which the same scam was perpetrated in hundreds of similar actions.
As a result of the court’s order, Mr Akram cannot obtain a licence to practice without the permission of the trial judge. He also received an order to meet Esure’s costs of £250,000. This was instead of receiving a custodial sentence.
As Akram is bankrupt, his family agreed to pay the costs on his behalf.
Insurance Edge Comment;
When the director of a PI/negligence claims firm is on social media bragging that they’ve bought four Lamborghinis in 6 years you’d think that various regulators would take a keen interest. You would imagine HMRC would investigate the company possibly, suspecting the accounts were not 100% accurate, especially when a staff reward/tax avoidance scheme set up in 2014 involved the buying and selling of gold bullion.
You have to wonder why a local University was so keen to bestow an honorary doctorate upon a director, when the Asons Foundation was making donations to the University. Or who exactly at Bolton Council would think about offering a £300,000 grant to help facilitate the move to new offices for Asons? And then try to keep the `loan’ a secret.
Something rotten is at the heart of business, academia and local government in Bolton. But IE isn’t expecting any deeper investigations by the Police anytime soon.