Fraud Around the Nation: Arson, Assault and Employee Defrauds Insurer

March 2, 2017
North Dakota Man Assaults Friend Then Scams Insurer

A North Dakota man was arrested and charged with insurance fraud, according to an announcement by the state’s insurance department.

Weston Aho was charged with insurance fraud, a class C felony, and is scheduled to appear in court on March 13 in Ward County.

The North Dakota Insurance Fraud Unit learned a claim was filed for medical coverage against Aho’s policy after a friend had fallen off one of Aho’s horses. After the claim was paid, it was discovered that Aho had actually assaulted the friend and that Aho lied to the company in the claim.

South Carolina Man Burned Down Restaurant for $700K in Insurance

Authorities say the owner of a Sumter County, S.C., restaurant burned down his business on purpose and collected nearly $700,000 in insurance money.

Sumter County deputies told media outlets that 57-year-old Ronald Cantey was arrested Monday about seven months after the fire at The Compass restaurant near Turbeville

Investigators say evidence shows Cantey was at the restaurant about five minutes before the fire was reported.

Cantey said after the restaurant burned in July that he put his heart and soul into the business for five years and was devastated.

Cantey was charged with second-degree arson, making a false insurance claim and burning personal property to defraud an insurer. He was in jail awaiting a bond hearing and it wasn’t known if he had an attorney.

Florida Insurance Company Employee Arrested for Defrauding Company

Jennifer Summerlott, a licensed customer service representative, was arrested following a scheme that allegedly bilked her Ft. Lauderdale-based employer, Fairway Insurance Group, LLC (Fairway) out of more than $1 million. Summerlott is accused of orchestrating an elaborate scheme to defraud her employer through the use of fake insurance invoices to reroute company funds for her personal financial benefit.

Summerlott served as the accounts payable and commercial lines manager for Fairway from 2006-2015. In 2015, account irregularities were noticed by other Fairway staff members who, after suspecting that they might have uncovered insurance fraud, reported their findings to the Fort Lauderdale Police Department. The case was referred to insurance fraud investigators within the Department of Financial Services’ Division of Investigative and Forensic Services (DIFS).

The subsequent investigation revealed that between 2010 and 2015, Summerlott allegedly created and submitted dozens of fake electronic invoices that were supposedly from various insurance companies that regularly conducted business with Fairway. Summerlott would then prepare company checks tied to Fairway’s company account to pay these fabricated invoices. Doing so enabled Summerlott to retrieve the fake payments and divert them to a personal bank account.

In addition, DIFS’ investigation found that Summerlott refinanced 40 insurance policies that Fairway clients had previously paid in full. As a result, Fairway received checks from third-party financing agencies to cover the cost of the insurance premiums. Summerlott used those payments to cover up the massive company losses that accrued as a result of her fake invoice scheme.

Summerlott was arrested February 27, 2017, and transported to the Broward County Jail. She has been charged with four first-degree felonies, including organized scheme to defraud, grand theft, criminal use personal ID and diverting insurance trust funds.

This case will be prosecuted by the Broward State Attorney’s Office, 17th Judicial Circuit. If convicted, Summerlott faces up to 30 years in prison.

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.