Bogus bus crash ‘seemed fake’

COURT: Court Case
COURT: Court Case
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Passengers were given compensation claim forms before they boarded a bus bound for a bogus crash, a court heard.

Sarah Drummond told Sheffield Crown Court her friend was handed two pieces of paper at City Claims 4U in Pitsmoor – the business at the centre of a fraud trial – before the pair got on the double decker.

First bus driver Adam Herbert drove the vehicle deliberately into the back of a car minutes later.

The bump led to 26 people making almost identical whiplash claims.

Miss Drummond said: “A form had my name on before I got on the bus. My friend Sheenah asked me if I wanted to claim but I said no. It seemed fake.”

Legitimate passenger Terri Higginbottom, who had caught the bus for work, said: “It was weird the way people reacted because the bus did not hit the car that hard, but people were flying down the bus like it had crashed really bad. I wasn’t injured.”

Miss Higginbottom also described how a male passenger asked her to act as a witness after he fell into a pole on the bus - then asked her if she wished to submit a claim.

Both women gave evidence for the prosecution in the trial of Mohammed Omar Gulzar, aged 31, Nisar Hussain, 28, Kiran Shaheen, 22, Javen Khan, 46, Sami Selm, 39, and Shoaib Nawaz and Liam Howden, both 25.

It is claimed they planned the ‘crash for cash’ collision in June 2011.

All seven defendants deny conspiracy to defraud insurance companies by deception, while seven other people have pleaded guilty to fraud charges.

The trial continues.