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CA Department of Insurance
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Los Angeles insurance agents arraigned in $687,000 grand theft scheme

News: 2021 Press Release

For Release: January 11, 2021
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
Email Inquiries: cdipress@insurance.ca.gov
Los Angeles insurance agents arraigned in $687,000 grand theft scheme

LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Licensed insurance agents Robert Farmer, 66, of Camarillo, and Marion Urcan, 68, of Agoura Hills, were arraigned today in Los Angeles County Superior Court on multiple counts of grand theft after allegedly accepting over $687,000 in insurance premium payments from business owners and misappropriating the money for their personal use.

Farmer and Urcan, doing business as Centerpointe Insurance Services Limited in Camarillo, accepted insurance premium payments from two towing companies in the Los Angeles area.

On June 20, 2019, the California Department of Insurance received a complaint from the owner of one of the towing companies that alleged Centerpointe Insurance Services Limited accepted two checks totaling $391,000 for the company’s commercial auto insurance policy, but Farmer and Urcan did not forward these premium payments to the insurance company. On December 20, 2019, the Department received a complaint from the other towing company that alleged Centerpointe embezzled a $50,000 down payment made toward the renewal of the towing company’s commercial auto insurance policy.

An investigation by the Department of Insurance revealed Farmer and Urcan accepted over $687,000 in total from the two towing companies but never sent the payments to an insurance company to secure liability insurance for either business owner, leaving them vulnerable to catastrophic loss.

“By allegedly taking payments but not placing insurance coverage, these licensed insurance agents left these small businesses at risk for devastating financial loss,” said Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara. “My Department will continue our efforts to protect small business owners from fraud and deception that threatens their livelihoods.”

The Department is taking the appropriate administrative action against the licensees. If you feel you’ve been victimized or know someone who has been victimized by either Farmer or Urcan, please call 661-253-7500.

They are scheduled to return to court on March 5, 2021. This case is being prosecuted by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

 

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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.

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