Newark Man Sentenced For Participating In Staged Accident Ring

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TRENTON –A Newark man was sentenced for participating in a staged accident ring, Attorney General Anne Milgram and Criminal Justice Director Deborah L. Gramiccioni announced last week.  He had been on trial with his two brothers, but all three pleaded guilty on April 14 as the lengthy trial neared its end.  His brothers were sentenced to prison last month.

According to Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Riz Dagli, Ralph Campbell, 28, of Newark, was sentenced to five years of probation, conditioned on him serving 364 days in county jail, by Superior Court Judge Joseph C. Cassini III in Essex County.  He pleaded guilty to second-degree conspiracy to commit racketeering.  The state has 10 days to decide whether to appeal, on the basis that probation is not a proper sentence for a person convicted of a second-degree crime.

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On July 27, Judge Cassini ordered Edward Campbell Jr., aka Tariq Campbell, 39, of Elizabeth, to serve six years in state prison, and ordered Bobbie Campbell, 41, of Newark, to serve three years in state prison.

Edward Campbell Jr. had pleaded guilty to all charges against him, including conspiracy to commit racketeering, conspiracy to commit health care claims fraud, criminal use of runners, theft by deception, and tax fraud, as well as three counts of conspiracy to commit health care claims fraud, six counts of health care claims fraud and one count each of racketeering and theft by deception.  The charges were contained in four indictments obtained by the Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor.

Edward Campbell Jr. admitted that he acted as a runner for Irwin B. Seligsohn, who was sentenced last year to three years in prison, becoming the first New Jersey lawyer to be imprisoned under New Jersey’s criminal runners’ statute.  The law makes it a crime for attorneys or health care professionals to pay persons to procure clients or patients to file insurance claims and lawsuits.

Racketeering and conspiracy charges were filed by the Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor against Seligsohn, his law partner, their firm, and 47 other individuals in connection with the firm’s use of runners to recruit individuals, many of whom feigned auto accident injuries so phony insurance claims could be submitted. To date, more than 35 defendants have pleaded guilty, including Seligsohn and the firm, Seligsohn, Goldberger & Shinrod in West Orange.

Edward Campbell Jr. admitted that he recruited persons to be in staged accidents and assisted in setting up fake accidents so that phony insurance claims could be submitted by Seligsohn and other attorneys.

Ralph and Bobbie Campbell both pleaded guilty to second-degree conspiracy to commit racketeering.  Each admitted he was involved in several fake accidents and the submission of fraudulent claims.

“The illegal use of runners to procure patients and clients drives up the cost of insurance in this state,” Dagli said.  “As in this case, runners often urge people who are not injured to be treated for injuries and submit false accident claims.  We will vigorously enforce New Jersey’s statute making it a crime to employ runners.”


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