Wash. man pleads not guilty in dead cat claim

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TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — A Washington state man charged with insurance fraud after authorities say he used photos from the Internet to file a $20,000 insurance claim for a dead cat that didn't exist has pleaded not guilty.

KOMO News reports (http://bit.ly/Nhw5Ly) that during a court hearing Wednesday, a trial for 29-year-old Yevgeniy Samsonov of Tacoma was scheduled to begin in September.

Samsonov was involved in a minor traffic accident in 2009, and the other driver's insurer paid some $3,500 to cover chiropractic treatment. More than two years later, Samsonov claimed that his cat Tom had been killed in the crash, and he sought $20,000 in compensation.

Authorities say Samsonov submitted photos of a cat, but an insurance representative found that the pictures had come from the Internet.

If convicted, Samsonov could get a year behind bars.

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