Couple charged over false death claim in New York terror attacks

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The Independent US

A couple accused of falsely claiming the wife was killed in the 11 September terrorist attacks were charged yesterday with insurance fraud.

Charles Allen Gavett, 44, and his wife, Cynthia, 40, were arrested on Monday, the state Insurance Commissioner, John Oxendine, said.

The Pike County Sheriff, Jimmy Thomas, said: "We're a rural county. We would not have expected somebody to take advantage like this." The Gavetts live in Concord, about 45 miles (72 kilometres) south of Atlanta.

Mr Gavett filed a death claim with Minnesota Life Insurance Co, claiming his wife had an appointment in one of the twin towers on 11 September. Minnesota Life became suspicious after learning that the office co-ordinating the search for the missing had no record of Mrs Gavett, and the local newspaper never published an obituary.

The insurer said it then learned that Cynthia Gavett had been seen since the attacks.