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D.A. charges 10 for faking injuries in SEPTA accident

Ten people were charged after video from a bus accident allegedly showed personal injury claims were fraudulent.

Think twice before you fake it, said District Attorney Seth Williams.

Ten passengers were charged with personal injury fraud in connection with an incident on April 5, 2010 involving the route C SEPTA bus. Nine have been arrested, and the tenth is still at large.

Officials released surveillance video Monday they say shows that the 10 riders faked their injuries. The video shows the bus driving north on Broad Street and striking an abandoned newsstand.

"Video inside the bus shows that no one made movements that would go along with an injury," Williams said.

A mirror and a window were damaged in the incident. Four of the individuals were not on the bus at the time of the accident.

The 10 settlements sought compensation ranging from $5,000 to $225,000.

James B. Jordan, SEPTA general counsel, said SEPTA has a high volume of minor bus accidents and receives roughly about 500 claims a month. He said the company is already seeing a 10 percent drop in claims with the help of video surveillance.

Jordan said by the end of the year, 90 percent of SEPTA vehicles will be camera-ready.

"If you're on SEPTA, you're on camera," Jordan said.

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