Fraud News: Sentencing in California $500K Auto Insurance Fraud Ring

August 16, 2017
Sentencing for 9 California Residents in $500,000 Auto Insurance Fraud Ring

In one of the larger auto insurance fraud cases in the Sacramento region, Michael Charles Young, of Sacramento, the leader of a large auto insurance fraud ring was sentenced recently to more than 10 years in state prison for bilking insurance companies out of an estimated $500,000 by filing fraudulent insurance claims.

Detectives are seeking three at-large suspects with outstanding warrants and asking for the public’s help finding them—Jazlyn Ladana Burrell, of Vallejo; Lavina Louise Nunally, and Desiree Patricia Vasquez, both of Sacramento.

An investigation by detectives with the California Department of Insurance and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) uncovered evidence Young and several co-conspirators filed multiple insurance claims totaling an estimated half a million dollars after crashing cars into each other or filing claims on vehicles with existing damage—known as paper collisions. The case is being prosecuted by the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office.

According to detectives, Young’s ring operated in the Sacramento area between 2014 and early 2016 filing dozens of claims ranging between $5,000 and $40,000 with a number of insurance companies.

In most cases, false identities were used to register and insure the vehicles used to file claims and accomplices were provided scripts to use when communicating with insurers. Some defendants allowed their identities to be used for compensation and then cashed checks issued in their names. The ring grew as friends and family members were recruited.

Young was arrested in April 2016, and charged with numerous felonies, including insurance fraud, possession of stolen vehicles, identity theft, and possession of firearms by a convicted felon.

Ohio Woman Commits Fraud Seeking Medical Benefits Through Workers’ Comp

A Columbus, Ohio, woman pleaded guilty to workers’ compensation fraud recently after filing three false claims for medical benefits since 2012.

Shardette Nyarko, 36, pleaded guilty to a first-degree misdemeanor charge of workers’ compensation fraud in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas. A judge fined her $100, then suspended the fine.

Investigators with the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation discovered Nyarko’s false claims last year while conducting a routine review of disallowed injury claims. They found Nyarko filed a false claim in April 2016 and two in 2012. Nyarko stated in her claims that she was at work at the time of her injuries, but investigators determined she was not employed at the time she said she was injured.

When questioned by investigators, Nyarko explained that she needed medical treatment she could not afford.

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