San Diego Fraud Ring Cracked

December 20, 2002

Over $700,000 dollars were paid in claims for two traffic deaths that never occurred in a case that involved phony police reports created in order to process claims, according to the San Diego Union Tribune.

An Allstate insurance claims adjuster, Gaylan Sweet, was aided by Leigh Ann Sanders, Ruther T. Brown Sr. and Kion Gould, all of San Diego, were sought by police on $1 million arrest warrants. The scheme that the foursome had concocted allegedly included invented children and tangled the lives of real and imaginary people. Real deputy sheriffs’ names were reportedly used in phony police reports but in fact, the sheriff’s had never actually responded to the accidents. According to reports, real doctors treated the “make-believe” children and witnesses that never existed confirmed facts about the cases.

After such reports were filed, two checks of a substantial amount were sent to the supposed mourning parents. Allstate adjuster, Gaylan Sweet, purportedly approved both checks.

In one case dating back to last year, 11-year-old Ruther Brown Jr. was supposedly struck and killed by a car walking across an Encinitas intersection. Fraudulent police reports detailed the fatality and a drunken driver at blame. The investigation revealed that Ruther Brown Jr. never existed, as was the case with the Encinitas intersection and the drunk driver. Ruther Brown Sr., of Oklahoma, received $500,000 from an Allstate policy that was issued. Another case which paid $210,000 two years ago to Leigh Ann Sanders, included a non-existent son that was killed in a hit and run accident.

The case was developed by investigators in the fraud division of the California Department of Insurance after being contacted by Allstate security several months ago. Sweet had been under investigation for some time but continued to work with the company until he was fired one week prior to his arrest. Two of the four alleged criminals are in custody. They face a maximum penalty of seven years.

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