Calif. Workers’ Comp Claims Examiner Arrested

December 10, 2002

Investigators with the California Department of Insurance (CDI), Criminal Investigations Branch’s Fraud Division arrested Elisa I. Guillermo, 38, of Concord, Calif., and her sister, Juliet I. Armstrong, 41, also of Concord.

A Contra Costa County Superior Court Judge charged Guillermo and Armstrong with felony grand theft and embezzlement. Both were also charged with a Penal Code enhancement for theft over $150,000. Bail was set at $160,000 each. The Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office, Insurance Fraud Unit is prosecuting the case.

Between 1991 and 1993, Guillermo was a claims examiner with Gates McDonald Company of Concord, a workers’ compensation claims administrator. Fraud investigators allege that during her employment, Guillermo, with the help of Armstrong, embezzled more than $429,000. Allegedly, Guillermo issued or caused to be issued, approximately 425 fraudulent claim payment checks to a non-existent physical therapy provider named J. Levy Registered Physical Therapists. The checks were mailed to Armstrong’s residence or to designated mail drops.

These charges come on the heels of an earlier arrest of Guillermo and Armstrong in July of this year (CDI News Release #111). In that case, the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office and CDI conducted a joint investigation that revealed Guillermo allegedly issued over $700,000 to Parkside PT, a non-existent vendor while employed by Fremont Compensation Insurance Company in 1999 and 2000. The San Francisco case is pending.

The total combined alleged theft exceeds $1.1 million.

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