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Former Huntington Beach insurance agent arrested for allegedly stealing over $90,000 from elderly client

News: 2023 Press Release

For Release: January 12, 2023
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Former Huntington Beach insurance agent arrested for allegedly stealing over $90,000 from elderly client

ORANGE, Calif.  Sally Nava Kanarek, 76, of Huntington Beach, was arrested today on multiple felony counts of financial elder abuse, grand theft of an elder, and forgery after a Department of Insurance investigation found she allegedly defrauded an elderly client, who did not have the capacity to consent to her actions, out of $90,995.

Kanarek worked as a licensed life insurance agent between 2018 and 2021. She moved into the victim’s home in 2020 as an alleged roommate. After learning of the victim’s medical condition, she gained control of their finances, while posing as their “health care manager." Kanarek received more than $90,000 from the victim, including some checks which appear to have been forged.

Kanarek sold the elderly victim two annuities totaling more than $580,000. The sold annuities were against the victim’s financial interest and allowed Kanarek to collect more than $7,800 in commission. Kanarek also attempted to withdraw more than $110,000 from the victim’s IRA and to sell the victim’s home.

Orange County Adult Protective Services and the Orange County Public Guardian assisted in representing the victim’s interests and petitioned for a conservatorship of the victim and their estate in Orange County Superior Court. A conservator has been appointed by the court to better care for the victim.

Kanarek was arrested by the Newport Beach Police Department and booked into the Orange County Jail. Bail was set at $50,000. This case is being prosecuted by the Major Fraud Unit of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

The Department revoked Kanarek’s license on December 29, 2022. The Department also imposed an industry ban against Kanarek.

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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 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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