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CA Department of Insurance

Husband and wife insurance agent team charged with insurance fraud

News: 2016 Press Release

For Release: March 16, 2016
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
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Husband and wife insurance agent team charged with insurance fraud
Pair cheated insurer out of more than $130,000
SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Pablo Alvarez Espino, 36, and Josefina Garcia Espino, 34, both of San Marcos, were arrested following an investigation by the California Department of Insurance and face multiple felony counts of insurance fraud.

The Espino's were both appointed insurance agents by Farmers Insurance when they allegedly committed fraud by reinstating and backdating cancelled policies, adding coverages that did not exist on the original policy in order to cover damages from crashes that occurred while uninsured.

"The Espino's alleged crimes are part of a multi-billion dollar fraud problem in California that every consumer pays for through higher insurance premiums," said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones.

In a joint investigation by the California Department of Insurance Investigation Division and Fraud Division, investigators uncovered evidence that between 2007 and 2013, the Espino's made changes to a number of policies for themselves and other relatives that resulted in Farmers paying on nine fraudulent claims totaling more than $130,000.

A Grand Jury indicted Pablo on 23 felony counts and indicted Josefina on 17 felony counts.

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Media Notes: 
  • No booking photos are available in this case.
  • Charges include enhancement for white collar crime that resulted in losses exceeding $100,000 and a great takings enhancement for losses exceeding $65,000.  

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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