Two fraudsters who pocketed over £225,000 by making phoney insurance claims for 1980s Ford Escort RS Turbos have been sent to prison.

Jason Sallis, 52, and Amandeep Gill, 35, were part of a gang that made 21 fake claims between 2009 and 2017. During their eight-year con, they repeatedly claimed their classic 1980s Ford Escort RS Turbos had been nicked.

They made insurance claims of between £10,000 and £25,000 each time, backed up with counterfeit sales invoices.

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In truth, the cars had been sold or scrapped by their last legitimate owners. The defendants used doctored photos and false plates on genuine high-value RS Turbos they owned to create the illusion the stolen ones were in good nick.

Gill was found guilty of conspiracy to commit fraud and given a 32-month prison sentence

They would then use bogus sales invoices and fraudulently obtained MOT certificates to insure the vehicles for a high Agreed Value policy. The scammers would get insurance in place, wait several months and then submit fake theft reports.

Suspicions were raised and triggered a police investigation resulted in 42 charges being made against 19 defendants. All 19 criminals were convicted of fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud including ringleaders Sallis and Gill.

Sallis, from Blondvil Street in Coventry, was found guilty of eight counts of fraud and jailed for three years at Warwick Crown Court.

Gill, from Corbison Close in Warwick, was found guilty of conspiracy to commit fraud and given a 32-month prison sentence.

RS Turbos
The defendants used altered photos and false plates on genuine high value RS Turbos

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Detective Constable Alison Roberts, from Warwickshire Police, commented: "This was an elaborate scheme and for those eight years, those involved were enjoying payouts courtesy of everyone who pays for car insurance.

"It is a shame that law-abiding citizens have to pay out more on their insurance premiums because the likes of Sallis, Gill and their associates were willing to work together to create fictitious claims." she added.

"I hope this sentence serves as a warning to others involved in these sorts of scams."

"Those involved in frauds like this should be under no illusion that they could face a custodial sentence, a criminal record and having to pay back what they have taken," she warned.

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