A YOUNG man falsely claimed he was the driver of his car when it crashed at a Broughton Retail Park.
Kristian Wall, 21, did it because his friend did not have insurance.
The following day Wall made a false £6,000 claim on his own insurance.
But the truth came out when the other driver looked up Wall on Facebook and saw the real driver was a Facebook friend of his.
He was able to point out the actual driver to the police.
At Mold Crown Court, Wall, of Grace Road, Ellesmere Port, who admitted fraud and perverting the course of justice, was spared immediate custody.
He was given a six-month prison sentence suspended for two years.
Wall was ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work and he was placed on a two-month tagged curfew to ensure he remains indoors between the hours of 6.30pm and 6am.
Judge Niclas Parry told him it struck at the heart of the administration of justice and had frustrated the detection of crime.
He had made a fraudulent insurance claim which had a direct effect on the public.
False insurance claims had become an epidemic, he said.
“It is the public which picks up the tab.”
Wall, the judge said, had claimed he had acted in shock.
But he had made the insurance claim the day after the accident in which he was not even involved.
Judge Parry said Wall was making up the financial loss, he had made early admissions and pleaded guilty and he had no previous convictions.
References spoke highly of him.
“If it is possible, I am prepared to give young men who have led decent lives a chance,” he said.
Owen Edwards, prosecuting, said that at 9.30pm on January 22 a man was driving in Broughton Retail Park when he was struck by a Ford Focus.
A crowd gathered, the driver admitted responsibility, and they waited for the police to arrive.
But when officer arrived the defendant Wall, who owned the car, claimed he was the driver.
He tested negative when given a breath test and the officer then went through the details of the accident form with him.
The other driver was puzzled why the police officer was spending so much time with Wall rather than the actual driver.
When he asked the police officer about it, an investigation was started.
The other driver looked up Wall on Facebook and saw the actual driver of the Focus was a Facebook friend of his.
The insurance company had paid out £5,400 to Wall, with a £600 insurance excess.
Interviewed, Wall said he and friends had a “meet” where they admired each other’s cars.
A friend drove his car off and promptly crashed it into the other vehicle.
He claimed to be the driver because he knew his friend had no insurance .
Robin Boag, defending, handed in references from his former employer at Toyota and from the sea cadets.