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Former Gallagher claims manager jailed for theft

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A former Arthur J. Gallagher claims manager in the U.K., “driven by greed,” was sentenced to five years in prison after pleading guilty to stealing £1.8 million ($2.2 million) from his employer to fund an expensive lifestyle, City of London Police said Tuesday.

The theft did not involve any customers, the statement said.

Police said Martin Turner was a claims manager for Indemnity Risk Solutions, part of Ink Underwriting Agencies Ltd. in London, which Gallagher bought in 2013 and later merged into Pen Underwriting Ltd.

From June 2012 until July 2016, police said Mr. Turner, who was arrested on July 22, doctored insurance claims emails to ensure payments were made to third parties for personal items and services, including house renovations, luxury cars and to clear an existing mortgage.

The fraud escalated when, in October 2015, Mr. Turner used a falsified letter, claiming to have been given a £500,000 ($622,450) bonus from his employer, to justify the funding required to purchase his house.

Gallagher discovered the fraud and reported it to the police, the statement said. Fraud squad detectives working with Gallagher uncovered more than 50 false payments that Mr. Turner had made.

“This fraud is theft, pure and simple, and we take theft and any other dishonest behavior extremely seriously,” Bill McGowan, Chief Counsel at Arthur J. Gallagher, said in the statement.

“The criminal actions orchestrated by Martin Turner were identified through our enhanced governance and control procedures and did not involve any theft from customers. Our Financial Crime team quickly brought the findings of our own internal investigation to the attention of the City of London Police and Martin Turner’s employment was terminated,” he said.

Detective Constable Simon Cordell said in a statement, Mr. Turner “was a man driven by greed who took advantage of his position in the company to give himself a lifestyle beyond his means.”