A Tennessee man is headed to federal prison for nearly eight years for masterminding an insurance fraud ring that caused nearly $1 million in losses.
Dallas Ray Lewis Jr., 55, was sentenced to 92 months in prison for conspiracy to commit mail fraud.
Celebrate excellence in insurance. Join us at the Insurance Business Awards in Chicago on October 26.
Prosecutors said that Lewis had been involved in staging at least 16 car accidents over a 20-year period, according to a report by the Exponent Telegram. Assistant US Attorney Anthony Cougar said that Lewis acted as a kind of “producer” and “director” for the car accidents – determining where, when and how they would happen, the Telegram reported.
On occasion, Lewis even had the people who staged the accidents cut themselves with razor blades – so realistically that they fooled physicians, insurers and law enforcement officers into thinking the injuries had been incurred in the accidents.
Authorities said that Lewis recruited friends, relatives, and “some very desperate people” to stage the accidents.
Lewis’s defense attorney, Tom Dyer, tried to argue that convictions from the 1980s should be excluded when determining his criminal history, but Keeley said they indicated a lifetime career of fraud, the Telegram reported. She dismissed as irrelevant Dyer’s contention that Lewis was a friendly, likable person.
“I’m sure he’s a nice man. I just don’t want to be on the road with him when there’s an accident going on,” Keeley said.
NJ man headed to prison after $600,000 insurance scam
Funeral director arrested for insurance fraud