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Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared in Claims Magazine.

A Riverside, Calif. man has pled guilty to a whopping 59 felony counts of grand theft, 59 felony counts of insurance fraud, three felony counts of tax evasion and one felony count of conspiracy. Rene Montes, 42, defrauded insurance companies out of $1.5 million by illegally negotiating, settling, and collecting payments on liens for workers’ comp insurance claims.

According to investigators, Montes, who operated as W.C. Surgery Centers and W.C.S.C. & Associates, teamed up with Hector Porrata, Cara Cruz Thompson and George Martinez to carry out their spurious scheme. From August 2003 to January 2006, the group fraudulently solicited funds from AIG Claims Services and Matrix Absence Management Inc. for outstanding medical liens on workers’ compensation claims for services provided by medical providers.

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