Maple Ridge couple ordered to pay ICBC for lying about stolen truck
A Maple Ridge couple has to repay ICBC more than $100,000 for falsely claiming their expensive, leased truck was stolen.
Ronald and Jeannette LeBlanc were convicted of perjury and fraud in B.C. Supreme Court and ordered to reimburse ICBC for money paid to the leasing company, other costs and punitive damages.
"Quite apart from the compelling and objective nature of the corroborative evidence, the testimony of the LeBlancs is singularly unpersuasive," B.C. Supreme Court Justice Gail Dickson said in finding the couple guilty.
The Leblancs claimed they parked their distinctive Chevrolet Super Sport Roadster (SSR) in their driveway before heading to bed on October 1, 2004, and when they got up the next morning, the truck was gone. They filed a stolen vehicle claim and, as a result, ICBC paid out more than $60,000 to the leasing company.
Three years later, the vehicle was located on private property in Miramichi, New Brunswick, where it had been stored on behalf of a man who was hired by the Leblancs in the summer of 2004 to do some home renovations on their house in B.C.
ICBC's Special Investigation Unit found the truck had actually been spotted in Ontario two days before it was reported stolen.
An Ontario Provincial Police constable later testified that he became suspicious when he witnessed a young man driving the bright yellow SSR and ran a licence plate check. The check was date- and time-stamped, refuting the LeBlanc's claim that it was stolen two days later.
ICBC has since sold the Roadster at a reduced value to the Miramichi police. It is now being used for community outreach and to encourage teens to avoid driving while drunk.
"The vast majority of our customers are honest and we're committed to protecting them from fraudulent acts," said ICBC spokesperson Adam Grossman."We estimate that fraud costs each of our 3.1 million customers in the range of $100 to $150 per year."
• Anyone with information on a suspicious, exaggerated or fraudulent claim is encouraged to call ICBC's fraud tips line at 604-661-6844 or 1-800-661-6844, toll free from anywhere in the province. Tip information is confidential and callers can remain anonymous.