Filed Under:Claims, Investigative & Forensics

Featured Fraud: Swindling in La-La Land

After recklessly submitting fraudulent insurance claims to multiple insurers, one Los Angeles-area attorney has now been sentenced to formal probation and ordered to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in restitution.

Between 2003 and 2007, Susana Ragos Chung, 60, participated in a sophisticated organized auto fraud crime ring. The ring was initially discovered in 2004 by the California Department of Insurance (CDI) Urban Auto Fraud Task Force in the fraud division of its Benicia Regional Office, which initiated an investigation known as “Phantom Menace” into organized auto insurance fraud in the Bay Area in 2003.

Members of the task force went undercover in November of 2004 and were solicited to participate in staged collisions by a variety of law offices, including one owned and operated by Chung. Chung’s participation included submitting claims for suspects staging collisions for profit and representing “injured” claimants. Many of these “claimants,” however, had never met Chung or even knew that they had an attorney.

The efforts of the task force have led to the conviction of nearly 100 people, including 90 staged collision participants and three chiropractors. Many of the participants admitted that no accident had ever actually occurred.

Chung has agreed to place herself on inactive status with the California State Bar as the investigation continues, from which disbarment may result. She must pay $117,561 in restitution to insurance companies and $235,123 to the state restitution fund, as well as serve five years of formal probation.

Top Story

Ranked! Here's the safest minivan on the road, and the 4 that fall short

Minivans are the safest vehicles for families, right? Well, maybe not.

Top Story

Let’s talk turkey: 5 ways your Thanksgiving could go very, very badly

Thanksgiving is the most dangerous time of year for kitchen fires, and deep-fried turkeys actually aren't the top risk.

More Resources

Comments

eNewsletter Sign Up

Claims Connection eNewsletter

Breaking news on disasters, fraud, legal trends, technology, and CE initiatives for the P&C claim professional – FREE. Sign Up Now!

Mobile Phone
         

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.