Desperate car owners resort to insurance fraud

The Associated Press reports that "Driven to desperation, a growing number of financially strapped car owners are torching, sinking or ditching their vehicles and then reporting them stolen to cash in on the insurance." In Las Vegas, car insurance fraud cases are up more than threefold and other police departments are reporting smaller but still meaningful increases in the crime.

If you're reading this and thinking about setting your car on fire or driving it into a ditch and reporting it stolen, please, please, please don't do that. You might get away with it, but you might not. And if you don't, you could end up in jail for a long time -- and that, combined with penalties and legal fees, won't exactly help your financial situation.