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CA Department of Insurance

Los Angeles scammers busted for felony insurance fraud

News: 2015 Press Release

For Release: May 18, 2015
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
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Los Angeles scammers busted for felony insurance fraud
Investigators searching for driver involved in staged auto accident

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Tony Bimbo aka Anthony Riste, 45, and Brandy Riste, 22, both of Los Angeles, were arrested on two felony counts of insurance fraud after they allegedly conspired with Bobby Vlado, 40, to defraud Alliance United Insurance Company out of nearly $18,000. Investigators are still searching for Vlado.

In October 2013, Bobby Vlado reported to his insurer that he accidentally struck a pedestrian, Brandy Riste, at a busy intersection in Los Angeles because he was distracted while using his mobile phone. Riste visited the emergency room twice following the accident incurring over $11,000 in medical bills. Her father, Tony Bimbo, negotiated a claim on his daughter's behalf and she received an $18,000 settlement.

Evidence uncovered by detectives revealed that Riste's medical bills were never paid. In the course of the investigation, it was also discovered that although Vlado, Bimbo and Riste denied knowing each other, they communicated by phone extensively before and after the accident.

"This case serves as a reminder that fraud is a costly crime for insurers and consumers," said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones." These crimes are an expensive drain on the state's economy totaling billions annually. The cost of these scams is passed along to consumers through higher rates and premiums."

Bimbo was booked into the Inmate Reception Center and Riste was booked into the Century Regional Detention Center. Bimbo and Riste both posted bail and will appear in court on June 1. The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office is prosecuting this case. If you have any information about Bobby Vlado please contact Detective Dan Shoham at (661) 253-7405.

Media Notes:

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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