A former Newport Beach, Calif., insurance broker has been sentenced to several years in prison for insurance fraud, according to the California Department of Insurance.
CDI stated that Thomas Joseph Doino, 43 pled guilty to 11 felony counts in Orange County Superior Court on April 29. He operated Garden Grove-based Insurance Services & Resources. The case was built by the California Department of Insurance, Investigations Division (CDI) and the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.
Doino’s guilty plea included six counts of grand theft and five counts of acts constituting forgery. He was sentenced to four years in state prison on four of the felony counts; he will concurrently serve separate three-year terms on the remaining seven felonies. In addition, Doino will serve another, concurrent four-year term for assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm and making criminal threats.
Full restitution was awarded to all 11 victims for the combined $5,720.36 in insurance premiums stolen by Doino, CDI said. Furthermore, his plea agreement allows the judge to award increased restitution if three victims can provide the court additional evidence of loss.
Doino preyed on vulnerable individuals or those simply inexperienced at purchasing auto insurance, CDI said. In 2004, his targets were 20-something singles which he met in bars and coffeehouses in coastal Orange County. More recent victims were recovering substance abusers that he met during his own rehabilitation at regional sobriety homes.
Doino had his insurance license (#0C15542) revoked on January 1, 2003, after being criminally convicted of misdemeanor grand theft charges on Oct. 22, 2001. Nevertheless, Doino collected auto insurance premiums from 11 victims in 2004 and 2006. He then provided them with insurance cards, receipts, and other paperwork that led them to believe they had purchased valid policies. Instead of forwarding the monies to the supposed insurance companies, Doino pocketed the premiums, CDI said.
Three victims discovered the bogus policies only after they were involved in car accidents and learned upon filing a claim that they lacked coverage. All three victims had substantial monetary damage to their vehicles, and one victim is being held financially responsible for the damage caused to another driver’s car, CDI said.