NatEx catches ‘phantom passenger’
National Express West Midlands says it has caught out a 25 year old Birmingham man, who has now been jailed for contempt of court. Mykel Joseph-Allen was sentenced to nine months after claiming damages against the Birmingham based operator. Described by the operator as the ‘phantom passenger,’ he said he had been injured in a crash involving a bus that he was not on. In June 2015, Joseph-Allen saw a collision between a National Express West Midlands bus and a taxi on Soho Road in Handsworth. He then got on the bus and alleged that he had been injured during the collision. National Express West Midlands said it uncovered the scam when CCTV footage on the bus showed him boarding the bus after the collision.
MD of National Express West Midlands, Peter Coates, said, ‘We welcome the sentence and the judge’s comments, he said a clear message must be sent to those who pursue fraudulent claims, that the consequences will be a prison term. National Express will investigate thoroughly every claim against us. If they are found to be dishonest, we will take the appropriate action. Fraudsters should take note, just because you drop a claim doesn’t mean that’s the end of it.’