NAIROBI, Kenya Jul 4 – Insurance crime detectives attached to the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) have nipped in the bud a Nairobi Businessman’s attempt to defraud more than Sh200 million from Sanlam General Insurance.
In a major breakthrough against insurance claim fraudsters, Insurance Fraud Investigation Unit (IFIU) Detectives, investigating a suspicious claim lodged by businessman Anthony Maina Kiama (29) are now set to arraign the suspect in court in coming days and are awaiting directions from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP).
According to the investigative team, the suspect had lodged a Sh204 million claim with Sanlam General Insurance, purporting that Afroplast Industries based in Thika had lost its manufacturing machines in a fire incident last year.
“Investigations, however established that this was a fraudulent claim, as the machines destroyed in a fire incident in Thika, belonged to a different entity registered as Josmak Company Limited,” IFIU detective Peter Ewoi confirmed, adding that, “We have prepared the necessary files which have been forwarded to the ODPP for direction.”
While welcoming the investigative breakthrough, Sanlam Kenya Group CEO, Patrick Tumbo said the firm has enhanced its Internal fraud management systems to guard against the growing cases of fraudulent claims.
“Fraud is an industrywide problem that continues to reduce operational profit and erode shareholder returns and we appreciate the support from IFIU. At Sanlam Kenya, we are now vetting claims lodged with us, more stringently to weed out unscrupulous ones. Vetting is necessary though it may slightly lengthen the period leading to settlement, but we believe this is the price that we must pay to deal with fraud instances. We remain committed to ensuring that our customers receive exceptional service,” Tumbo said.
According to the IRA Insurance Industry Report for the period January – March 2019, 30 fraud cases were reported to the Insurance Fraud Investigation Unit (IFIU) in the first quarter of the year. 27 cases were pending investigation, 2 cases were pending before court and 1 was pending arrest of known accused.