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For Immediate Release:  
For Further Information:

July 13, 2006

Office of The Attorney General
- Zulima V. Farber, Attorney General
Division of Criminal Justice
- Gregory A. Paw, Director
Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor
- Greta Gooden Brown, Insurance Fraud Prosecutor

 

Division of Criminal Justice
609-984-1936

 

Mercer County Resident Charged With
Identity Theft and Insurance Fraud

TRENTON - Attorney General Zulima V. Farber and Division of Criminal Justice Director Gregory A. Paw announced that a Mercer County man has been indicted on charges of identity theft and insurance fraud for allegedly using a false identity to obtain insurance for his car and submit an insurance claim.

According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden Brown, Oscar Garcia Guillen, 54, of East Windsor, was charged with one count each of second- and third-degree insurance fraud and third-degree impersonation. Second degree crimes are punishable by up to 10 years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,000, while third-degree crimes are punishable by up to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000. Garcia Guillen also faces civil insurance fraud fines.

The indictment returned yesterday by a Mercer County grand jury alleges that Garcia Guillen stole the identity of a Trenton man, using the man’s driver’s license and personal information to obtain a car insurance policy from First Trenton Indemnity Insurance Company. It is charged that later, following an Aug. 5, 2003 automobile accident in Hamilton, Garcia Guillen presented police with a fraudulent insurance card in the Trenton man’s name and submitted a claim in the man’s name for $3,127 to State Farm Insurance, the other driver’s insurance company. Garcia Guillen’s claim was denied and the matter was referred to the Division of Criminal Justice - Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor. An investigation determined that Garcia Guillen had allegedly stolen the identity of the Trenton man, who did not know him.

The indictment is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. State Investigator Thomas Tiernan, Civil Investigator Jane Mongiardini, and Deputy Attorney General Valerie A. Noto were assigned to the investigation. Noto presented the case to the Mercer County grand jury.

Prosecutor Brown noted that some important cases have begun with anonymous tips from the public. People who are concerned about insurance cheating and have any information about a fraud can report it anonymously by calling our toll-free hotline at 1-877-55-FRAUD, or visit our Web site at www.NJInsurancefraud.org. State regulations permit that an award be paid to an eligible person who provides information if that information leads to an arrest, prosecution and conviction for insurance fraud.

The Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor was established by the Automobile Insurance Cost Reduction Act of 1998 (AICRA). The Office is the centralized state agency that investigates and prosecutes both civil and criminal insurance fraud, as well as Medicaid fraud. Criminal convictions for insurance fraud can result in fines and imprisonment, while civil penalties can include substantial fines and referral for revocation or suspension of professional licenses.

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