Fianna Fáil TD for Mayo, Dara Calleary, has said the government has wasted over two years promising the establishment of a special unit in An Garda Síochána to investigate insurance fraud cases in County Mayo and nationwide.

Deputy Calleary commented, “For over two years now, the government has held up the establishment of an insurance fraud unit as the key reform in tackling fraudulent insurance claims. Businesses, community clubs, even motorists were being abandoned by government as premiums soar.

“To this day, we have no idea how many complaints have been made to An Garda Síochána in relation to insurance fraud.  We do not know how many cases involving personal injury have been dismissed due to fraudulent evidence been given.  We do not know how many people have been brought to court for committing insurance fraud and, most crucially of all, we do not know how many people have been convicted.

“There seems to be no downside to committing insurance fraud.  My offices and clinics across Mayo have been visited by people who have been the victims of insurance fraud. Insurance fraud is not a victimless or a costless crime.  Not only does it cost the business or motorist against whom a fraudulent claim is being made, but it also costs the rest of us by way of higher premiums. 

“My Party colleagues and I have been to the fore of this issue from day one.  We have brought forward legislation that would make the perpetrators of insurance fraud pay the legal fees of the defendant when a case is dismissed. 

“It is a number of months on since I stood up in the Dáil during Leaders Questions and detailed the plight many businesses in Mayo have experienced because of insurance fraud.  The Government have put this matter on the long finger for far too long – it is time to get tough on insurance fraudsters”, concluded Deputy Calleary.