Bigmotor Releases Report on Insurance Fraud

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Many employees at Bigmotor Co. have been engaged in automobile insurance fraud at the instruction of their supervisors, an investigation report released by the Japanese used car dealer Tuesday showed.

According to the report, 61 workers, or nearly 60% of 104 surveyed employees, said they had been ordered by their supervisors to pad car repair charges to receive bigger insurance payouts. Eight said they committed fraud so they would get paid more.

The probe was conducted by a panel of outside lawyers tasked with reviewing the fraud cases. Executives and employees across the company had lacked a sense of compliance, the report said.

In one case of the improper practices, a factory worker intentionally hit a car with a sock containing a golf ball to dent it, according to the report. In another case, a worker scratched a car body with a screwdriver, it said.

Behind those improper practices were excessive sales quotas and frequent demotions that put pressure on employees, the report said.

Bigmotor has so far found 1,275 cases of such fraudulent practices and that ¥6.62 million in insurance benefits for 177 of the cases have been repaid, the company said.

In response to the report, Bigmotor said that President Hiroyuki Kaneshige will return all of his remuneration for a year. Other executives will return 10% to 50% of their remuneration for three months.