Insurance scammer who wanted $1M claim caused own amputations

World News

A Taiwanese man was hit with insurance fraud charges for allegedly trying to claim over $1 million in payouts for a double amputation due to self-inflicted dry ice injuries.

The 24-year-old suspect — identified only by his last name, Chang — lost both of his legs below the knees due to fourth-degree frostbite, bone necrosis and sepsis, Newsweek reported, citing the Taipei District Prosecutors Office.

After the amputations, Chang supposedly applied for compensation from eight different insurance policies with five companies that totaled up to $1.3 million, the Taiwan News said.

A 24-year-old man soaked his legs in dry ice and later had them amputated to get a $1.3M insurance payout. Jam Press

At the time, Chang claimed that he was initially injured while riding his scooter at night, the outlet explained.

One insurance company paid out $7,000, but the other four alerted police when they noticed Chang purchased the policies suspiciously close to when he received his grisly wounds.

According to the indictment, Chang was actually injured when a friend strapped him into a chair and left him to sit with his legs immersed in a plastic bucket filled with dry ice for several hours, Newsweek reported.

Chang and accomplice Liao have been charged with insurance fraud and attempted insurance fraud. Jam Press

The accomplice, Liao, had supposedly agreed to help Chang pull off the quick cash grab after warning him that a gang was supposedly after him, the Taiwan News added.

Liao — who knew Chang from their college — took photos of Chang’s hours-long ordeal, police said.

The authorities double-checked Chang’s scooter claims with the day of the incident, and found that the temperatures were between 43 to 62.5 degrees Fahrenheit — not cold enough for serious frostbite.

Photos from the hospital also showed that Chang had symmetrical injuries, which are rare in frostbite cases.

Chang’s college friend supposedly helped him pull off the scheme. Jam Press

The condition of Chang’s wounds also suggested he had been barefoot at the time, which further led investigators to conclude that they were “man-made.”

A search warrant executed in November 2023 turned up the plastic bucket supposedly used for the dry ice, Newsweek said.

Chang and Liao have been charged with insurance fraud and attempted insurance fraud.

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