News: 2010 Press Release
For Release: March 12, 2010
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
Insurance Commissioner Poizner Announces Street Race Video on YouTube Leads to Arrest of Diamond Bar Siblings for Alleged Auto Fraud
Brother, Sister Submit Claim For Nissan GT-R ‘Supercar’ Accident Found on Video Sharing Site
California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner announced today that on Friday, March 5, Jay Xi Chen, 21, and his sister, Tracy Chen Chen, 29, both of Diamond Bar, were arrested at their residence on felony auto insurance fraud charges for filing an allegedly false insurance claim surrounding damage done to a Nissan GT-R supercar. Jay was charged with six counts; Tracy was charged with one.
"We are all victims of auto insurance fraud by paying for our fellow consumers' false claims," said Commissioner Poizner. "This case also highlights the diligence and creativity with which we will pursue allegedly fraudulent claims."
A four-month investigation revealed that Jay reported to Farmers Insurance Exchange that his sister had been driving the GT-R when it was involved in a collision on Interstate 10 on March 16, 2009. Tracy corroborated this story. Jay later withdrew this claim, stating he would pay for the repairs himself.
On June 2, 2009, Jay reported another claim with the same vehicle, stating that this time he crashed the auto while driving on Highway 60 in Riverside County.
However, ICC Collision Center reported that it had Jay's unrepaired Nissan GT-R in its shop since March 2009.
Furthermore, a video found on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MXKUd8oCKSQ) showed a Nissan GT-R being driven on Glendora Mountain Road during what appears to be a street race. The supercar crashed into a wall. Detailed inspection of the video showed the GT-R has the same damage as the one in Jay's claim. The potential loss of this claim was $76,000.
The criminal charges were filed against the Chens by the San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office, which is prosecuting the case. Each count could result in a penalty of up to five years in prison and/or $10,000 in fines if convicted.
The arrest resulted from an investigation by the Inland Empire Organized Automobile Fraud Interdiction Team operating out of the California Department of Insurance's (CDI's) Inland Empire Regional Office. This team is comprised of CDI and the California Highway Patrol. Farmers also provided assistance during the investigation.
Commissioner Poizner oversees 16 CDI Enforcement Branch regional offices throughout the state. Approximately 2,000 insurance fraud-related arrests have been made by the Department of Insurance's enforcement division since Commissioner Poizner took office in 2007 - more arrests than have been made during any other two year period, under any previous insurance commissioner.
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