Isidro Santillan, 54, has been sentenced to three years in state prison and agreed to pay more than $133,000 in restitution to multiple victims.
For more than two years Santillan reportedly embezzled more than $100,000 from clients, pocketed premium money and created phony documents leaving his clients at financial risk.
“By failing to forward insurance premiums, Santillan placed his customers in great financial jeopardy,” Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said in a statement. “However he could not escape the law. We will continue our fight against insurance fraud and work with our law enforcement partners to bring justice to California consumers.”
Santillan was arrested in August 2014 after an investigation by the California Department of Insurance confirmed Santillan’s fraud. The department began its investigation after receiving multiple complaints regarding Santillan’s business practices involving the sale of various insurance products and bonds.
Operating out of his office in Pacoima, Santillan sold polices to contractors across the state, but left them uncovered by not forwarding premiums to brokers, finance companies and insurers. Santillan reportedly concealed his theft by providing some of his clients with phony premium finance agreements.
Santillan pleaded no contest to two felony counts of grand theft and multiple acts of embezzlement. In addition to serving jail time and paying restitution, Santillan will have no involvement in insurance business in any capacity for 10 years after his release from prison. The case was prosecuted by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office-Consumer Protection Unit.
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