Lew Alicock, 31, was charged by a state grand jury Tuesday and was arrested today in Woodbridge. He is being held at Middlesex County Jail. The indictment charged him with two counts of second-degree insurance fraud, Two counts of third-degree theft by deception, one count of third-degree attempted theft by deception and third-degree forgery.
According to the indictment, on May 24, 2013, Alicock called Pacific Specialty Insurance Company to report parts of his Yamaha stolen. Alicock allegedly claimed that he was out of town for work and had left the motorcycle at his mother’s residence in Irvington. He allegedly told the representative that he had just returned from the work trip to discover the theft of parts. On July 23, 2013, Pacific issued a check to Alicock for $5,512.96, which Alicock cashed the check at his bank. Alicock was able to cash out the full amount from his checking account. On August 12, 2013 Alicock allegedly called Pacific and asked for the $5,512.96 check to be reissued to himself and the repair shop.
Pacific then ordered a stop on the check with the bank, but Alicock no longer had sufficient funds in his accounts. Because Alicock was deficient, the bank closed all of his accounts. The bank repaid Pacific the full amount, but was only able to recover a portion by “clawing back” his other accounts. Alicock still owed the bank approximately $3,039.81. The financial institution later used a collection agency to recover approximately $1,535.00 from Alicock.
On September 3, 2013, Pacific reissued the check to Alicock and the repair shop. Alicock cashed the second check with a different bank. It is alleged that the second check had his signature, as well as a fraudulent signature that Alicock had scribbled.
In March, OIFP questioned the manager of the shop who revealed that Alicock came to the shop on May 24, 2013 and asked the mechanic to take parts off his bike. The removed parts included fairings and the slip over the exhaust, according to the repair shop manager. In his insurance filings, Alicock had reported both parts among those stolen. The manager further stated that Alicock returned on May 28, 2013 and paid for the removal and put the bike parts in his car. Two days later, he returned and had the mechanic put those parts back on the bike.
Alicock allegedly tried the scam again November 2013, this time attempting to defraud another insurance company by claiming that his motorcycle had been stripped of several parts while being housed in Newark. In this instance, Alicock allegedly requested a payout of $5,900, but the insurer, Rider Insurance, did not approve the claim. OIFP obtained service records from the same repair shop, which show Alicock requested several parts be taken off his vehicle the same day his claim was filed with Rider.
The indictment is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Second-degree crimes carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $150,000, while third-degree crimes carry a maximum sentence of five years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $15,000.
Deputy Attorney General Colin Keiffer presented the case to the grand jury. Detectives Kristi Procaccino and Megan Flanagan coordinated the investigation with assistance from Detective Sargent Jarek Pyrzanowski, Detective Kahlil McGrady, Detective Ron Allen and Analysts Chris Runkle and Terry Worthington. Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Ronald Chillemi thanked Woodbridge Police Department for assisting with the arrest.
Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Chillemi 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.