Michael J. McMahon, 55, and Dawn C. Velapoldi, 43, pleaded guilty in federal court to conspiracy to commit mail fraud for reporting fake vehicle crashes targeting commercial truckers and receiving more than $168,000 in insurance claims, according to a press release from the U.S. Dept. of Justice.
According to an indictment returned by a federal grand jury, McMahon and Velapoldi reported fake motor vehicle crashes to fraudulently obtain compensation for damage to vehicles they said was caused by commercial trucks at numerous locations throughout New York.
Since 2006, prosecutors said McMahon and Velapoldi made at least 83 claims to trucking companies about the fake accidents. The claims stated a commercial truck sideswiped a sports utility vehicle, causing damage to the driver’s side of the vehicle. In each case, McMahon and Velapoldi provided the name of a different purported claimant.
Prosecutors allege McMahon and Velapoldi made up names of witnesses, set up 34 mail boxes in 15 states and used phony invoices from nonexistent auto repair shops as part of the scheme.
Both face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and will be sentenced in April.