A Muskegon insurance agent has been charged with fraud and embezzling more than $17,000 of his clients’ money, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and the Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) reported.
The AG and DIFS allege that between October 2014 and June 2016, Charles Booker Jr., 63, collected nearly $17,200 in insurance premiums from 42 clients but failed to remit the premiums to Farmers Insurance. Instead, Booker converted the money to his own use, officials say. He also allegedly applied money he collected in premiums from three clients to the policies of several other clients whose premiums he did not remit to the insurer.
Booker faces the following charges:
- Three counts of embezzlement by an agent or trustee of $1,000 or more but less than $20,000, a felony punishable by five years’ imprisonment and/or a $10,000 fine, or three times the amount embezzled, whichever is greater;
- One count of insurance fraud, a four-year felony and/or a $50,000 fine; and
- Using a computer to commit a crime, which is a felony punishable by seven years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine in this instance.
Booker was given a $25,000 personal recognizance bond.
The DIFS Fraud Investigation Unit investigates criminal and fraudulent activity related to the insurance and financial markets and works with the attorney general and law enforcement to prosecute these crimes.
Source: Michigan Attorney General’s Office
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