LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) Director Anita Fox announced that a Michigan resident who pleaded guilty to auto insurance fraud was ordered to pay restitution and fines in excess of $15,000.
Over several months in 2016, Amelia Zea-Behnke of Delta Township submitted fraudulent auto insurance claims seeking reimbursement for providing attendant care services to her son, who was previously injured in an accident. car. A joint investigation by the DIFS Fraud Investigation Unit (FIU) and the Michigan Department of the Attorney General proved that Ms. Zea-Behnke did not provide these attendant care services during the claimed period and therefore was not entitled to the payments it had received. .
As a result of the investigation, Ms. Zea-Behnke was charged with the following:
• four counts of insurance fraud; and
• four counts of false pretences $1,000 — $20,000.
Zea-Behnke pleaded guilty to one count of false pretences on October 27. His plea deal included paying $15,498.75 in restitution to the defrauded insurance company and dismissing other pending charges. On January 12, Zea-Behnke was formally ordered to pay this restitution along with fines and costs, by Judge Rosemarie Aquilina of the 30th Circuit Court, thus ending the case.
“We appreciate that our partnership with DIFS has resulted in this plea and restitution being paid in full,” AG Nessel said. “We will continue to work with them to secure accountability for anyone who commits insurance fraud.”
“Our CRF is working hard to protect Michiganders from insurance fraud and to ensure that the system that Ms. Zea-Behnke benefited from can continue to protect auto accident survivors,” the Fox director said. “Every Michigander can help DIFS fight this type of fraud, which leads to higher insurance premiums for all of us, by reporting suspected insurance fraud online at michigan.gov/ReportFraud2DIFS or by calling DIFS at 877-999-6442 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The FIU investigates criminal and fraudulent activities related to the insurance and financial markets and works with the state and other law enforcement agencies to prosecute these crimes. Suspected insurance fraud can be reported to DIFS safely, easily and, in most cases, anonymously by calling 877-999-6442 or online.
The mission of the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services is to provide access to safe and secure insurance and financial services fundamental to the opportunity, safety, and success of Michigan residents, while promoting economic growth and sustainability in both sectors. Additionally, the Department provides consumer protection, outreach, financial literacy, and education services to Michigan residents. For more information, visit michigan.gov/DIFS or follow the Department on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.