Mass A.G. Leaves No Stone Unturned; Man Charged with Falsely Claiming Jewels Were Stolen

May 3, 2004

A Hingham, Massachusetts man has been ordered to pay more than $24,000 in restitution after pleading guilty to charges he falsely reported jewelry was stolen after he had actually reportedly pawned the goods, Attorney General Tom Reilly announced.

Claudio Velez, 40, of Hingham, pleaded guilty on Monday in Quincy District Court to one count of insurance fraud and one count of larceny over $250. Judge Mary Orfanello sentenced Velez to nine months in the House of Correction, suspended for 18 months. Velez also was ordered to pay restitution of $24,839 at his sentencing.

The charges stem from an incident in April 2002 when Velez reported to the Brockton Police Department that two expensive watches – a Breitling and a Rolex Presidential – had been stolen from his motor vehicle. Velez submitted a claim for the watches with his insurance company, Arbella Mutual Insurance Company and based on Velez’s statement, Arbella replaced the watches at a cost of $22,349.

The investigation reportedly revealed that the watches Velez claimed were stolen had actually been pawned at E-Z Pawn & Diamonds in East Boston, by Velez. The watches were not in his possession on the date of the theft.

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