Fine for Ramsey woman after she submits £785 of false delayed train claims to Greater Anglia

Rail delays are affecting Abellio Greater Anglia trains

Rail delays are affecting Abellio Greater Anglia trains - Credit: Archant

A woman who tried to scam Abellio Greater Anglia out of almost £800 in false delayed train repayments has been fined more than £300.

Susan Vrij, 64, used her maiden name and family member names among others on 44 claims for compensation to the rail operator between November 2014 and July 2015.

Compensation is paid when trains are delayed by 30 minutes or more.

Vrij, of Hewitt Road, Ramsey, made claims for trains between Manningtree, Colchester and Liverpool Street

An investigation began in July 2015 after she submitted 22 separate claims in the same month.

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Vrij admitted fraud by false representation at Westminster Magistrates’ Court and was sentenced on December 16.

She spent time identifying delayed services before submitting ticket stubs to the train operator which she claimed were for the trains in question, the court was told.

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But magistrates heard it would have been impossible for Vrij to be on some of the trains she claimed compensation for as they had been travelling in opposite directions at the same time.

There were also cases where she had made several compensation claims in different names for the same train journey, submitting one claim with the outward ticket, one with the return and another with the receipt.

By the time she was caught, Greater Anglia had paid her £144.50 in compensation, though she had claimed for £785.55.

Vrij was ordered to re-pay the compensation, given a £305 fine and told to pay £265 costs.

Detective Constable Nicholas Thompson from the British Transport Police, speaking after sentencing, said: “Vrij thought by submitting these claims in different names she would get away with fraud, but she was wrong.

“I pay tribute to the hard work of colleagues at Greater Anglia who uncovered her scam.

“Fraudulent behaviour such as this costs the rail industry thousands of pounds. We treat such activity very seriously and I am glad Vrij has been bought to account for her actions.”

A Greater Anglia spokesman added: “It is important passengers receive the compensation they are entitled to when services are delayed.

“This case makes it clear the courts will clamp down on those who submit fraudulent claims and, although an isolated case, we remain vigilant in our auditing to ensure any fraudulent activity is identified and appropriate action taken.”

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