Discretion is her job, and the young woman, with rectangular glasses and a black coat, does not attract attention in this large Parisian hotel where she has made an appointment, 300 meters from the offices of her company, the Vendome Investigation Agency. A private detective, Julie Catalifaud works in particular for several insurance companies. “I have the advantage of having a profile that is not expected in this professionshe says. I am a young, dynamic looking woman. It’s easy for me to walk into a restaurant with a small purse, a computer or a book, to sit at a table near the person I’m investigating, even if it means sometimes even him talk, without her being suspicious. »
Its missions consist of investigating, following people in shadow, in order to verify that they have not defrauded their insurer. Legal surveillance as long as it is not disproportionate and does not violate the private life of the insured, the detectives having to confine themselves to intervening in public places.
Fraudsters are rarely suspicious. The general public is often unaware that private research agents can be mandated to monitor them. Professional scammers imagine, most of the time, that the damage is not significant enough to warrant an investigation. This inconsistency serves her. “It’s difficult to hold a character on a daily basis, it’s not a lifenotes Julie Catalifaud. Many insurance fraudsters think that investigations and tails only happen to other people. »
“In 80% of cases, it is indeed a fraud”
The young woman, a lawyer by training, has made a specialty of heavy bodily injury cases, resulting in significant compensation from insurance companies. A textbook case? “A woman said that following a car accident she was seriously injured in the leg, limped badly and used a cane. She arrived at the site of the expertise by car, being accompanied. At the exit, we followed her: 300 meters further, the car stopped, the woman got out without a cane, she went around the car almost running, took the place of the young driver – who was to be his son – and drove off. » The vehicle then stopped in front of a supermarket. “The woman threw her cane in the trunk, did her shopping, brought packs of water back to her car. In ten minutes, we had understood that it was not coherent. »
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