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Toronto rehab clinic fined $200,000 for staged auto collisions

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The Ontario Court of Justice has found a Toronto rehab clinic guilty of participating in staged auto collisions and ordered it to pay $200,000 in fines.

The Financial Services Commission of Ontario says the court also ordered Ontario Rehab Centre to pay $609,000 in restitution to insurer State Farm.

The clinic, located in east-end Toronto, was charged with knowingly making false representations to the insurer to obtain payments for services provided to claimants.

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It was also accused of charging State Farm for services that were not provided.

The convictions stem from an investigation dubbed Project Whiplash, involving the Financial Services Commission of Ontario, Toronto police, the Insurance Bureau of Canada and several member insurers.

According to the IBC, insurers paid out an estimated $4-million in fraudulent claims as a result of the scam.

"These are fraudulent acts that jeopardize the integrity of our health-care system, drive up premiums, take valuable time from emergency services, tie up the courts and cost everyone," Rick Dubin, vice-president of investigations at the IBC, said in a release Wednesday.

"Criminals need to be brought to justice. The co-operation between police, IBC investigators, individual insurance companies and FSCO helped make this possible."

Earlier this year, individuals and other clinics were convicted under similar charges, the IBC said.

If you have questions about driving or car maintenance, please contact our experts at globedrive@globeandmail.com.

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