– Attorney General Anne Milgram and
Criminal Justice Director Deborah L. Gramiccioni
announced that an Union County man who solicited
people to participate in a staged accident
ring pleaded guilty yesterday to all charges
against him. He has been on trial with his
two brothers, who also pleaded guilty yesterday.
According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta
Gooden Brown, guilty pleas were entered by
Edward Campbell Jr., aka Tariq Campbell, 39,
of Elizabeth, and his brothers, Ralph Campbell,
27, and Bobbie Campbell, 41, both of Newark,
before Superior Court Judge Joseph C. Cassini,
III in Essex County. Deputy Attorneys General
Andrew Fried and Mary Erin McAnally have been
trying the case for the Office of the Insurance
Fraud Prosecutor. Fried handled the plea hearing.
Campbell, Jr. acted as a runner for Irwin
B. Seligsohn, who was sentenced last year
to three years in prison, becoming the first
New Jersey lawyer to be imprisoned under New
Jersey’s criminal runners’ statute.
The law makes it a crime for attorneys or
health care professionals to pay persons to
procure clients or patients to file insurance
claims and lawsuits.
and conspiracy charges were filed by the Office
of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor against
Seligsohn, his law partner, their firm, and
47 other individuals in connection with the
firm’s use of runners to recruit individuals,
many of whom feigned auto accident injuries
so phony insurance claims could be submitted.
To date, more than 35 defendants have pleaded
guilty, including Seligsohn and the firm,
Seligsohn, Goldberger & Shinrod in West
pleading guilty yesterday, Edward Campbell
Jr. admitted that he recruited persons to
be in staged accidents and assisted in setting
up fake accidents so that phony insurance
claims could be submitted by Seligsohn and
other attorneys. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy
to commit racketeering; conspiracy to commit
health care claims fraud, criminal use of
runners, theft by deception and tax fraud;
three counts of conspiracy to commit health
care claims fraud; six counts of health care
claims fraud; and one count each of racketeering
and theft by deception (all in the 2nd degree).
Campbell also pleaded guilty to third-degree
criminal use of runners and third-degree failure
to pay taxes. The charges were contained in
four indictments obtained by the Office of
the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor.
illegal use of runners to procure patients
and clients drives up the cost of insurance
in this State,” Prosecutor Brown said.
“As in this case, runners often urge
people who are not injured to be treated for
injuries and submit false accident claims.
We will vigorously enforce New Jersey’s
statute making it a crime to employ runners.”
and Bobbie Campbell pleaded guilty yesterday
to second-degree conspiracy to commit racketeering.
Each admitted he was involved in several fake
accidents and the submission of fraudulent
Cassini scheduled sentencing of all three
defendants for July 10. Second-degree crimes
carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in state
prison and a fine of up to $150,000, while
third-degree crimes carry a maximum sentence
of five years in state prison and a fine of
$15,000. Edward Campbell Jr. could face several
consecutive prison sentences.
defendants who were on trial with the Campbell
brothers pleaded guilty in February and will
be sentenced on May 8. Their uncle, Louis
Campbell, 64, of Newark, pleaded guilty to
various conspiracy and health care claims
fraud charges. He has served three months
in the county jail. The State will recommend
that he be sentenced to time served.
Williams, 55, of Irvington, also pleaded guilty
to various conspiracy and health care claims
fraud charges. The state will recommend that
he be sentenced to 364 days in the county
Prosecutor Brown thanked Detective Ned Shaw,
Civil Investigators George Delgrosso and Gerard
Pizzillo, Analyst Kathleen Ratliff and Deputy
Attorneys General Andrew Fried and Mary Erin
McAnally for coordinating the investigation
Brown also thanked Detective Abraham Aquino,
Detective Jaroslaw Pyrzanowski, retired State
Investigator Ed Buttimore, former State Investigators
Keith Johnson, Sophia DeBrito, Jose Vendas,
Ted Merced and Paul Han, and Newark Police
Officers Michael Conners and Vaughan Williams
for assisting in the investigation.