Checks made by Aviva staff helped convict an income protection (IP) insurance fraudster after he claimed more than £20,000 of lost income from a job he did not have.
Sydenham man Neil Omojowho was found to have provided Aviva with false payslips that showed he was employed by a legitimate company on a pay as you earn (PAYE) basis to take out an income protection policy.
After referral by the insurer, an investigation by City of London Police’s Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED) revealed the payslips had been forged, and that Omojowho was only a contractor hired by the company on a periodic basis, meaning he had taken out the policy fraudulently.
Omojowho pleaded guilty at Inner London Crown Court on 5 October 2022 to two counts of fraud by false representation. On 30 March he was sentenced to 12 months in prison which was suspended for two years, and ordered to complete 80 hours of unpaid work.
In April 2019, Omojowho took out an income protection policy with Aviva, and declared he was employed as a computer software manager.
On 17 January 2020, he told the insurer he had been off work since the beginning of the month, and provided a genuine medical certificate to support the claim.
By the time Omojowho said he had returned to work on 9 November 2020, he had received a total of £20,087 from Aviva under his policy agreement.
But checks made by the insurer’s staff revealed the company Omojowho claimed he worked at did not recognise the payslips he had provided, and the case was referred to police in May 2021.
The director of the company told IFED officers that Omojowho was not employed on a PAYE basis. This was corroborated by records held by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), which showed Omojowho registered as self-employed in 2019.
Omojowho was arrested by IFED officers in March 2022 and during his police interview admitted he knew the information he had provided the insurer was false.
Detective constable Kelly George, from IFED, said: “Sadly, although Omojowho had a medical certificate to support his claim of ill-health, he had knowingly provided Aviva with forged documents when he first took out the policy.
“Intentionally providing false information on your application can have devastating consequences, as this case shows.”