New Jersey Attorney General Peter Harvey and Vaughn McKoy, director, Division of Criminal Justice, announced that the Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor has charged a Ghana-born con artist and a “Jane Doe” with faking his death in order to collect $500,000 in life insurance benefits from at least one fraudulently obtained insurance policy.
Additionally, the alleged con artist and an accomplice have been charged with stealing more than $38,000 in student loan monies. Arrest warrants have been issued for the defendants.
According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden-Brown, Kofi Boakye, 40, of Avenel, Middlesex County, was charged in a State Grand Jury indictment with conspiracy (2nd degree), attempted theft by deception (2nd degree), identity theft (2nd degree), theft by deception (3rd degree), hindering prosecution (3rd degree), and two counts of falsifying records (4th degree).
The indictment also charged Irene Addai, 39, of East Orange, Essex County, with conspiracy (2nd degree), theft by deception (3rd degree) and falsifying records (4th degree). A third person, identified in the indictment as “Jane Doe,” was charged with conspiracy (2nd degree), attempted theft by deception (2nd degree), identity theft (2nd degree) and falsifying records (4th degree).
Second degree crimes carry a maximum penalty of up to ten years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,00. Third degree crimes carry a maximum penalty of up to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000, while fourth degree crimes are punishable by up to 18 months in state prison and a fine of up to $10,000. The defendants also face possible civil insurance fraud fines pursuant to the Insurance Fraud Prevention Act.
Gooden Brown noted that arrest warrants have been issued for Boakye (aka Kofi Boachie, James Boachie, Kofi Boathie, Kofid Boathie, and Kofi O. Boachi) and Irene Addai. Additionally, the defendants have been listed on the Division of Criminal Justice “12 Most Wanted” list (www.njdcj.org). Boakye is described as a black male, 6′ tall and weighing 160 lbs. with black hair and brown eyes with a last known address of 1716 Forestview Drive, Avenel, Middlesex County.
Additionally, Boakye previously held state licenses as a registered nurse and as a nurse practitioner. Addai is a black female approximately 5’4″, 130 lbs., black hair and brown eyes. Addai’s last known address was 19 Hawthorne St., East Orange, Essex County. Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Boakye or Addai are encouraged to contact the Division of Criminal Justice – Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor’s confidential TipLine at: 1-877-55-FRAUD or State Investigator Lisa Shea, Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor at 973-599-5879. All information will remain confidential.
The State Grand Jury indictment alleges that between Dec. 16, 1999 and Nov. 30, 2001, Boakye and Addai, representing that they were engaged to be married, provided fake personal information including occupations, income and other identifying information, as the basis for fraudulently obtaining two $500,000 term life insurance policies issued by the Massachusetts Mutual Insurance Company. The couple also used the fake information to apply for and collect more than $38,000 in student loans from ITT Skills Company.
Specifically, the indictment charged that “Jane Doe” falsely represented herself as Addai, by reporting to Mass Mutual Insurance Company that Boachie (Boakye) had died in Ghana, Africa, on March 12, 2001 of hepatic failure and hepatitis. It is charged that the “Jane Doe” subsequently filed false death claim forms and provided a fraudulent death certificate to support Boachie’s purported death and to collect on at least one of the insurance policies.
With assistance from Ghana’s Washington D.C. Embassy, it was determined that there was no evidence that a James Boachie (or any of the known aliases) had died in a Ghana hospital, or had been taken to any mortuary or cemetery in the country. In determining that Boachie was in fact alive, Mass Mutual denied the claim, rescinded the policies and referred the case to the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor for criminal investigation.
The Insurance Fraud Prosecutor’s investigation determined that Boachie and Addai also falsified student loan applications in order to steal $38,000 in student loan money from the ITT Skills Company. It is charged that the defendants claimed that they, along with non-existent students Alberta Addai and James Addai, were enrolled at Bloomfield College – the investigation determined that no such students attended Bloomfield College. It is charged that Boakye and Addai used the student loan money to pay for the fraudulent life insurance policies.
The indictment was handed up to Mercer County Superior Court Judge Maria Marinari Sypek on June 29. The case is assigned to the Essex County Superior Court. The investigation continues.
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