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CA Department of Insurance
CA Department of Insurance
CA Department of Insurance

Orange County insurance broker arraigned for allegedly stealing from small business owners

News: 2023 Press Release

For Release: July 5, 2023
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
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Orange County insurance broker arraigned for allegedly stealing from small business owners
Department seeks assistance to identify additional victims

ORANGE, Calif. — Brian Keith Arteaga, 39, of Placentia, was arraigned today on multiple felony counts of grand theft by embezzlement, theft of fiduciary funds, insurance fraud, and money laundering after a California Department of Insurance investigation found he allegedly stole over $80,000 from small business owners and failed to give the payments to their respective insurance, leaving the victims uninsured. Arteaga’s alleged actions resulted in an uncovered loss of over $500,000 for three victims, one of whose property burned down.

Records indicate there may be additional victims and the investigation is on-going. Anyone who believes they may be a victim of Arteaga should contact the Department at 714-712-7663. 

Arteaga worked as an insurance broker from 2004 to 2023 under business names Elias Insurance Services, EIS Insurance Services, and Elias Insurance Agency, LLC. Between 2017 and 2021, Arteaga collected money from the victims that was intended for their insurance policies. Arteaga failed to remit the money to the insurance and kept it for his personal use. His actions resulted in his victims’ policies being cancelled, which they discovered after attempting to file loss claims.

The Department issued Arteaga an Order of Immediate Suspension and Prohibition from the insurance industry and his insurance license has been deactivated.

Arteaga was arrested by the Placentia Police Department on Friday, June 30, 2023, and booked into the Orange County Jail. Bail was set at $20,000. Arteaga is scheduled to return to court on July 21, 2023. This case is being prosecuted by the Major Fraud Unit of the Orange 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 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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