Louisiana Woman Pleads Guilty to $116K Insurance Fraud

February 17, 2017

A Monroe, La., woman has pleaded guilty to mail fraud, admitting that she filed a $116,000 insurance claim for $1,000 in assets.

U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley says 54-year-old Lasandra Edwards filed for bankruptcy in October 2013, saying her furniture and clothing were worth $1,000. That November, she bought a renters’ policy claiming $100,000 in assets. Edwards’ house caught fire and burned on Dec. 1, 2013.

The defendant attended a creditors’ hearing associated with her bankruptcy case on Dec.10, 2013. She reaffirmed the information in the previous filings that her furniture and clothing were valued at $1,000. However, the next day on Dec. 11, 2013, Edwards filed a claim under her insurance policy with State Farm falsely stating that her personal property was valued at $116,063.

Edwards faces up to 20 years in prison, restitution and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled June 1.

A news release says Edwards entered the plea before a magistrate judge, and it will become final when accepted by a district judge.

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