News: 2010 Press Release
For Release: July 15, 2010
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
Commissioner Poizner Announces Livermore Man Busted in Connection with 'Crash and Buy' Insurance Fraud
Insurance Commissioner Poizner today announced the arrest of a Livermore man for allegedly filing an insurance claim for a collision which occurred before auto insurance was added to his vehicle, a scheme otherwise known as "crash and buy."
"When you drive without insurance, you put everyone on the road at risk for serious financial losses," said Commissioner Poizner. "If you get behind the wheel of a vehicle in California, you must have auto insurance. Purchasing insurance after an accident has occurred and lying about your coverage will only result in more trouble with the law."
Brian Edward O'Boyle, 38, was arrested and booked at Santa Rita Jail on June 30. He was charged with two felony counts of insurance fraud. His next court appearance is scheduled for July 30.
O'Boyle's insurer, GEICO, reported the alleged fraud to the California Department of Insurance in January 2010. Investigators discovered that on September 25, 2009, O'Boyle's coverage on his 1996 Honda Prelude was cancelled by GEICO due to non-payment or premium. On December 1, 2009, at about 10:30 a.m., O'Boyle was involved in an accident with another vehicle in San Jose. Nearly two hours later, at 12:09 p.m., O'Boyle renewed his insurance policy with GEICO.
The accident was reported to GEICO on December 2. O'Boyle gave a statement to GEICO on December 21, in which he said that the accident took place after he renewed his insurance policy. Upon further investigation, GEICO determined that O'Boyle did not have coverage at the time of the accident and denied his claim without payment.
CDI investigators obtained a confession from O'Boyle on May 13, 2010. He purportedly admitted to renewing his insurance policy after the accident in order to get coverage for the damages. Investigators also discovered that O'Boyle was driving with a suspended license at the time of the accident.
Because O'Boyle did not have insurance coverage at the time of the accident, the other driver incurred $4,386 in losses, which was covered under the driver's Uninsured Motorist Policy. Although GEICO denied O'Boyle's claim, the company incurred investigative costs due to misrepresentations made by O'Boyle.
This case is being prosecuted by the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office.
Commissioner Poizner reminds all Californians that driving without insurance is illegal, but there are affordable options for recently unemployed or low-income drivers with good driving records. Driving without insurance and committing insurance fraud to cover your tracks is illegal and costly. The California Low Cost Auto Insurance Program offers affordable coverage to help eligible drivers comply with the law. For more information, visit the CDI website or call 800-866-AUTO-1.
Commissioner Poizner oversees sixteen CDI Enforcement Branch regional offices throughout the state. Nearly 2,800 insurance fraud-related arrests have been made by CDI since Commissioner Poizner took office in 2007 - more arrests than have been made during any other three year period, under any previous insurance commissioner.
Please visit the Department of Insurance Web site at www.insurance.ca.gov. Non media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.HELP. Callers from out of state, please dial 213.897.8921. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.
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