Former Palmdale insurance agent sentenced for felony fraud
News: 2015 Press Release
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Hesham Saleh Ibrahim, 57, of Palmdale, pleaded no contest on September 29 to felony insurance fraud and was sentenced to three years felony probation, 30 days community labor and ordered to pay nearly $1,000 in restitution and fines.
Ibrahim was charged in July 2015 with six misdemeanor counts of transacting insurance without a license for issuing 114 auto insurance policies. He was also charged with one count of felony insurance fraud for issuing a fraudulent insurance certificate for a $2 million commercial liability policy and pocketing the $350 premium.
"Ibrahim put the business owner at great financial risk when he issued a bogus insurance certificate," said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. "The consumer did the right thing by reporting they did not receive a policy from the insurance company, which helped our investigators uncover Ibrahim's illegal business activity."
Consumers should always make sure they receive a copy of the entire policy from the insurance company to confirm their coverage. An insurance certificate is not enough.
The Department of Insurance Investigation Division began an investigation after receiving a complaint from a consumer claiming they paid Ibrahim for liability insurance for their business, but did not receive a policy. Department investigators discovered Ibrahim was transacting business on an expired agent license, operating under Five Star Insurance Agency and Convenience Store. The department contacted Ibrahim and communicated that he was transacting business illegally and should stop immediately. He continued to function as an agent,issuing 15 additional auto insurance policies after receiving the warning from the department.
This case was prosecuted by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.
Media Note: Ibrahim did renew his license; however, the department is taking action to revoke his license.
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 www.insurance.ca.gov. 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.