Hacendia Heights, Calif. Man Pleads No Contest

November 18, 2002

On Nov. 13, 2002, as a result of a two-year investigation by the California Department of Insurance (CDI) Criminal Investigations Branch’s Fraud Division, Keith Aaron Hayes, 49, a resident of Hacienda Heights, California, pled no contest to one count of auto insurance fraud and one count of capping. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case.

Hayes was arrested and charged with four counts of insurance fraud on Feb. 14, 2002. In a plea agreement with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office on Nov. 13, 2002, Hayes, also known as Jamil Shabazz, pled no contest to one count of filing a false insurance claim and one added count of capping. The remaining counts of filing a false claim were dismissed. He was sentenced to three years in state prison and is to surrender on Jan. 9, 2003. If he complies and surrenders on that date, one count of filing a false claim will be dismissed. If he does not surrender, he may be sentenced up to 11 years in state prison on both charges.

The CDI Fraud Division investigation determined that Hayes participated with four individuals to file false insurance claims for an alleged traffic collision on Feb. 26, 1999. Driver, Lynnette Ammons and passengers Anthony Graham Jr., and Vita McNair, filed false insurance claims with Coast National Insurance Company. Opposing driver Devorea Wilson filed a false insurance claim with Reliant General Insurance Company for the alleged Feb. 26, 1999 collision. Ammons, Graham Jr., McNair and Wilson were previously prosecuted and convicted for insurance fraud for their participation in the crimes.

The investigation determined that Ammons’ vehicle had sustained damage from a collision on Aug. 17, 1998 and that same damage was reported in an insurance claim as being from the alleged Feb. 26, 1999 collision. The investigation also determined that Wilson’s vehicle had sustained damage in a Feb. 1, 1999 collision and that same damage was reported in an insurance claim from the alleged Feb. 26, 1999 collision with Ammons.

Hayes was previously arrested by CDI’s Fraud Division investigators and convicted of insurance fraud. In 1993, he was sentenced to four years in state prison for that conviction.

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