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CA Department of Insurance

Commissioner Jones Announces Arrest Of Central Valley Man For Insurance Fraud And Grand Theft

News: 2011 Press Release

For Release: January 10, 2011
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
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Commissioner Jones Announces Arrest Of Central Valley Man For Insurance Fraud And Grand Theft
Charges include 13 Felony counts

Today, Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones announced that Rob Cavazos, 38, has been arrested on 12 separate counts of insurance fraud including one count of grand theft for filing false claims with the State Compensation Insurance Fund (SCIF). Cavazos was booked into the Fresno County Jail. His bail has been set at $75,000.

"Insurance fraud is a detestable offense and it will be fully investigated by my Department," said Commissioner Dave Jones. "Those who would seek to cheat a fund to help workers who were legitimately injured will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

In March 2008, SCIF reported receiving a workers' compensation insurance claim from Robert Cavazos while he worked for PPS Packaging in Fowler, California. Cavazos filed a workers' compensation insurance claim for a left shoulder injury. During treatment of his left shoulder injury, Cavazos complained of limited range of motion and mobility of his shoulder. A year later, Cavazos treating physician found Cavazos had been misrepresenting his left shoulder's range of motion and notified the insurance carrier. Later, three days of sub-rosa video was taken of Cavazos and the video showed him carrying items with no left shoulder range of motion problems. After the sub-rosa video was reviewed by two medical doctors, they opined that Robert Cavazos' misrepresented the pain and mobility level of his injury to them and he was making a choice not to show full range of motion.

SCIF has paid out $23,818 in benefits to Cavazos and estimates that $11,272 was paid because of the misrepresentation of the injury presented by Cavazos during the course of treatment. The investigation was submitted to the Fresno County District Attorney's Office and an arrest warrant for workers' compensation insurance fraud and grand theft were issued for Cavazos. DOI Fraud Detectives and Selma Police Department officers arrested Cavazos and during the arrest determined he was also in possession of forged government documents. The District Attorney's Office will review to determine if additional charges will be brought against Cavazos for possession of forged government documents. This case was investigated by the Fresno Fraud Division of the Department of Insurance and the Selma Police Department.

The California Department of Insurance, established in 1868, is the largest consumer protection agency in California. Insurers collect $310 billion in premiums annually in California. Since 2011 the California Department of Insurance received more than 1,000,000 calls from consumers and helped recover over $469 million in claims and premiums. Please visit the Department of Insurance website at Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.4357. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.

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