Bakersfield dental office employee arrested for failing to pay restitution in $46,000 insurance fraud scheme
News: 2020 Press Release
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Dental office employee Karla Morales, 42, was arrested today for failing to pay restitution after being sentenced in an elaborate $46,000 insurance fraud scheme. In November 2018, Morales was sentenced to one year in jail, five years probation and ordered to pay $43,987.70 in restitution.
In June 2018, Morales was charged with 45 felonies, including insurance fraud, identity theft, forgery, and grand theft after Department of Insurance detectives discovered she had submitted 78 fraudulent dental insurance claim forms for services she or her family never received. The fraudulent claims forms contained personal identifying information, including forged and/or electronic signatures, of four different treating dentists, all of whom are Morales' former employers.
Morales used her dental industry knowledge, gained by working for these providers, to successfully submit the fraudulent insurance claims for reimbursement. She then conspired with her husband, Raymundo Morales Jr., 47, who was also charged in June 2018, to cash and/or negotiate the reimbursement checks made payable to him as the dental insurance policy holder. The total paid in fraudulent insurance payments was $46,688.21.
Morales has been booked into the Kern County Jail and is being held without bail. The Kern County District Attorney’s Office is prosecuting this case.
- Booking photo available upon request.
Led by Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara, the California Department of Insurance is the consumer protection agency for the nation's largest insurance marketplace and safeguards all of the state’s consumers by fairly regulating the insurance industry. Under the Commissioner’s direction, the Department uses its authority to protect Californians from insurance rates that are excessive, inadequate, or unfairly discriminatory, oversee insurer solvency to pay claims, set standards for agents and broker licensing, perform market conduct reviews of insurance companies, resolve consumer complaints, and investigate and prosecute insurance fraud. Consumers are urged to call 1-800-927-4357 with any questions or contact us at www.insurance.ca.gov via webform or online chat. Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800-927-4357. Teletypewriter (TTY), please dial 800-482-4833.