Staged-crash ring crashes and burnsBy James Quiggle
January 7, 2015
Hijacking often-dazed crash victims, personal-injury lawyer Joseph Haddad built a crime cartel that exposed the victims to worthless and possibly dangerous medical treatment.
The Bridgeport, Conn. man recruited crash victims for voodoo medicine, whether or not the motorists were hurt. It was all a setup to try and steal millions of dollars worth of insurance money with false crash-injury claims.
Haddad set up a corporate-quality fraud machine that stole insurance money efficiently. His henchmen bought official police crash reports that identified the victims. They hounded the motorists to get treatment at medical facilities aligned with Haddad. Recruiting crash victims is illegal in Connecticut, so Haddad usually paid his cohorts in cash under the table.
Crooked doctors, chiropractors and diagnostic clinics on his payroll typically made whiplash and disability diagnoses without examining the patients.
Dolled addictive pain pills
“Get something stronger even if you don't take it. All right, remember what I told ya: Tell them it ain’t working.”They also faked medical records, spooned out unneeded and addictive painkillers, performed worthless chiropractic treatment, ordered diagnostic tests of little medical value, and invented crash injuries.
His law office then billed insurers for phantom or useless injury treatment. Unlicensed osteopath Francisco Carbone wrote more than 145 prescriptions for at least 4,400 addictive painkillers for crash victims he never diagnosed.
Federal agents infiltrated Haddad’s crime ring by pretending they were crash victims.
Thousands of conversations were recorded. Haddad told one agent to get rid of a muscle relaxer he was taking and tell his physician to replace it with stronger and more-expensive pills.
“OK, um, between you and me, I would, I’d tell her this didn't work …” Haddad said in one recording. “Get something stronger even if you don't take it. All right, remember what I told ya: Tell them it ain’t working."
Haddad’s ring was vaporized. He received more than four years in federal prison in July 2014. Trapped as well, his cohorts pleaded guilty.
Insurer has final word
One defrauded insurer gave a strong official statement at Haddad’s sentencing.
“Joseph Haddad preyed on the trust inherent in those insurance policies, bringing forth lies and misrepresentations,” said John Sargent, Director of the Special Investigation Unit at MetLife.
“Mr. Haddad, an officer of the court — someone who swore to uphold the laws of the State of Connecticut — masterminded a fraud ring for the financial benefit of himself, while ignoring his ethical and moral responsibilities to present the truth.”
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