State authorities say six Passaic County residents played roles in a staged-automobile accident scheme that defrauded two insurance companies out of more than $78,000.

Jacopo Raule, Getty Images

Acting state Attorney General John Hoffman announced the charges Monday. He said five of the suspects were arrested last Wednesday, while the sixth was issued a summons.

The suspects were charged with conspiracy, insurance fraud and theft by deception in an indictment handed up April 10 by a state grand jury. Each could face lengthy prison terms if convicted on the charges.

Authorities say the accident occurred on April 29, 2009. They say four suspects were in a minivan that the driver purposely drove into another vehicle carrying the two other suspects.

 

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