Saturday, June 27, 2020

Bad Boys, Bad Boys [Updated]

[Scroll down for update]

Brian Bartz, 38, of Rochester, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with wire fraud, attempted wire fraud, and aggravated identity theft. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

Comment: Charged but not (yet) convicted . . .

Still . . . 

over the past five years, the defendant has been employed as an insurance broker by several different life insurance companies including: the Benjamin Hollamby Agency, which sold life insurance policies on behalf of Nationwide Life Insurance Company; the Banker's Conseco Life Insurance Company; Mass Mutual Life Insurance Company; and the Lavoro Group via Mass Mutual, located in Rochester.

Five years and just now catching up with him.

Just what did this rascal allegedly do?

Bartz would submit false applications for life insurance policies to the insurance companies on behalf of individuals who were not aware of these applications. The applications included individuals' means of identification without their knowledge or consent. In order to avoid detection, the defendant used various victims' bank accounts to pay the premiums for the unauthorized policies. Between 2015 and 2020, Bartz defrauded or attempted to defraud a number of life insurance companies and dozens of investors out of more than $950,000.

Quite a busy guy.

Stay tuned for more.

UPDATE [From HGS]: The scope of this fraud is simply astounding and, as was pointed out in the comments, it's unclear how the perp agent actually profited from it. I think I might have at least a partial answer:

Depending on his level of production with the carriers, he may have been eligible for significant commission "overrides" (kind of like production bonuses). Many years ago, a friend of mine told me about a scheme that he had learned about where the agent's compensation for a case was 125% (and please forgive me if I'm fuzzy on the details, this was a long time ago). The deal was that he'd go to his clients and say "here, buy this policy an I'll give you back the entire premium, and you'll have a year's free insurance." Yes, this was illegal, unethical, immoral and likely fattening, but at least his clients knew about it.

The article also notes that at least a few of his victims made "premium payments to him directly instead of to the life insurance company with which they had or believed they had a policy."

We've seen how well that works out.

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