TRENTON – Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino and the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor (OIFP) announced today that a former Gloucester County resident has been charged with insurance fraud and attempted theft by deception for allegedly submitting a forged document and making false statements to her insurance carrier in support of a $178,000 water damage claim under her homeowners policy.
Holly Glaze, 54, who now lives in Montana, was indicted today in connection with the alleged scheme to mislead Farm Family Casualty Insurance Company/ANPAC (Farm Family) into covering water damage caused by vandalism to a vacant rental property Glaze owns in Deptford Township. In addition to the charge of third-degree insurance fraud and second-degree attempted theft by deception, Glaze was also indicted on charges of forgery and false swearing, both in the fourth degree.
“Instead of abiding by the terms of her policy, this defendant allegedly lied and forged a document to collect insurance money she wasn’t entitled to,” said Attorney General Porrino. “We will continue to aggressively pursue insurance cheats, as thefts from insurance companies cause all of our insurance premiums to rise.”
Farm Family had denied Glaze’s claim on the basis that its policy didn’t cover damage to a property that was vacant during the 30 days immediately preceding a loss. In response to the denial of the claim, Glaze allegedly submitted a letter to Farm Family purportedly from a tenant that stated he had occupied the property during the 30 days preceding the damage. Glaze allegedly made a sworn statement to Farm Family reinforcing that false impression.
“Submitting a false or misleading claim to receive undeserved compensation is a crime that unfairly burdens honest policyholders with increased insurance costs,” said Christopher Iu, Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor. “The Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor will vigorously investigate and hold accountable anyone accused of this kind of crime.”
The damage to Glazes’ Fox Run Road property was discovered on March 3, 2014, when firefighters from Deptford Township Fire Department responded to a report that a fire alarm was sounding on the property. When they arrived they found that someone had intentionally clogged all the drains and turned on the faucets causing water to overflow into the house.
When Glazes’ insurance carrier denied the claim on the basis that Glaze’s tenants had moved out of the property in mid-January, she submitted a forged letter from a former tenant claiming he had been occupying the property within 30 days prior to the vandalism, according to the indictment. Glaze also made a false statement to the insurance carrier supporting that claim, according to the indictment.
The indictment is merely an accusation and defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Second-degree crimes carry a sentence of five to ten years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $150,000; third-degree crimes carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $15,000; fourth-degree crimes carry a sentence of up to eighteen months in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $5,000.
Deputy Attorney General Thomas G. Tresansky, Jr. presented the case to the grand jury. Detectives Jared England and Cortney Lawrence coordinated the investigation.
Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Iu thanked the Farm Family Casualty Insurance Company/ANPAC for referring the matter to the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor.
Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Iu noted that some important cases have started with anonymous tips. People who are concerned about insurance cheating and have information about a fraud can report it anonymously by calling the toll-free hotline at 1-877-55-FRAUD, or visiting the Web site at www.NJInsurancefraud.org. State regulations permit a reward to be paid to an eligible person who provides information that leads to an arrest, prosecution and conviction for insurance fraud.
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