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Fraud charge at body shop

James F. Verdi, owner and operator of Route

James F. Verdi, owner and operator of Route 27 Collision, 835 Sunrise Hwy., is free on $15,000 cash bail after entering a not-guilty plea in connection with an insurance fraud case, the Suffolk prosecutors said. Photo Credit: Suffolk DA

A West Babylon auto body shop owner with a history of consumer fraud complaints has been released on bail after arraignment on a felony charge that he made a false insurance claim, Suffolk County prosecutors said.

James F. Verdi, owner and operator of Route 27 Collision, 835 Sunrise Hwy., is free on $15,000 cash bail after entering a not-guilty plea. He awaits a November appearance at First District Court, Central Islip, court records show.

Verdi, 56, "is charged with insurance fraud following his arrest after the execution of a search warrant at his West Babylon business," Suffolk District Attorney Thomas Spota's office said in a news release.

Verdi was arrested Oct. 2 on charges he made the fraudulent claim, for more than $3,000, to Geico. Verdi's lawyer, George Duncan of Hauppauge, could not immediately be reached for comment Monday.

Spota said in the news release that "Verdi, until earlier this year, was affiliated with a Patchogue body shop, Ace Collision Inc., a business that generated approximately 55 consumer complaints to the New York State Insurance Frauds Bureau since 2005."
Investigators from Spota's Insurance Crimes bureau, the state Insurance Department Frauds Bureau and the National Insurance Crimes Bureau worked with Geico on the case.

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