Germantown Woman Pleads Guilty in Scheme to Fraudulently Obtain over $630,000 in Commissions
A Germantown woman has plead guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in connection with a scheme to submit fraudulent insurance applications using the identities of others, in order to obtain over $630,000 in commissions.
According to the United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein, Alicia Jones, 48, of Germantown pleaded guilty on November 3. According to her plea agreement, on November 23, 2011, Jones was licensed to sell insurance in Maryland and soon thereafter began working for an unidentified insurance company.
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein and Postal Inspector in Charge Terrence P. McKeown of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service - Washington Division.
According to the announcement, the insurance company for which Jones was an agent routinely provided insurance agents with advance commission payments at the time a new application was submitted to the company, representing approximately 50 percent of the total commission due.
Jones admitted that Between March 2012 and January 2013, she electronically submitted more than 3100 fraudulent insurance applications under her name and insurance license, as well as under the names and insurance licenses of others, in order to obtain the advance commissions. Jones submitted over 1400 fraudulent applications for over 310 fictitious individuals and over 1700 fraudulent applications for over 370 real persons who were not eligible for policies and did not know the policies were submitted on their behalf.
According to the US District Attorney’s Office, Jones encouraged multiple family members to obtain licenses to sell insurance and work with her. Jones submitted fraudulent applications under her name, the names of her family members and others. Jones either had access or stole access to her family members’ bank accounts in order to withdraw the advance commission payments on the fraudulent policies she submitted under their names prior to them noticing the deposits.
As part of her plea agreement, Jones will be required to pay restitution of $636,278.12, the amount of loss or attempted loss foreseeable to Jones during the conspiracy.
Jones faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm has scheduled sentencing for February 8, 2017, at 2:30 pm.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the U.S. Postal Inspection Service for its work in the investigation and thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney David I. Salem who is prosecuting the case.