North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Jim Long today announced the arrest of an Apex woman on one count of embezzlement and one count of obtaining property by false pretenses.
Mary Grantham Hicks, aka Mary Linda Hicks, 58, is the owner of Swift Creek Insurance and Realty in Raleigh. Long said Department of Insurance investigators arrested Hicks on Aug. 4.
Investigators allege that Hicks was a licensed insurance agent providing workers’ compensation coverage for local commercial construction contractors and subcontractors. In at least one case, Hicks took payment from a client but failed to remit that payment to the insurance company. Instead, she falsified a certificate of insurance and presented that as proof of coverage, investigators said.
An employee with the client company later suffered an accident in which another victim made a claim against the workers’ comp policy. It was at this point the client company realized the insurance was fraudulent, and notified the Department of Insurance.
Based on this allegation, Hicks surrendered her license to the Department a year ago; however, she continued to own an agency and employ at least one other licensed agent.
In addition, investigators executed a search warrant on Aug. 4 relating to further information received that suggested a continued pattern of criminal activity within the Swift Creek Insurance agency, Long said.
The commissioner urges clients of Swift Creek Insurance and Realty to review their insurance policies and call the insurance companies listed to confirm their coverage.
Department examiners began an audit of the agency immediately after the search by investigators.
The Department worked this case in conjunction with the North Carolina Industrial Commission.
Source: North Carolina Department of Insurance
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