Acting Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin and the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor today announced that an unlicensed insurance provider was indicted for allegedly providing fraudulent evidence of insurance records to loan service companies. It is further alleged that said records reflected insurance policies that did not exist in a scheme to fraudulently obtain money that was intended for annual insurance policy premiums.
Phyllis Daniel, 58, of Lakeland, Florida, was indicted on third-degree theft by deception, third-degree attempted theft by deception, third-degree misconduct by a corporate official, and eight counts of fourth-degree falsifying records. The indictment was returned by a grand jury on May 10, 2022.
The indictment alleges that between on or about May 17, 2017 and July 24, 2019, Daniel purposely obtained and attempted to obtain the property of five individuals and their respective mortgage loan service companies by creating or reinforcing the false impression that Exodus Financial Services, Inc. (a company owned by Daniel based out of Oak Ridge, N.J.), was owed premiums for homeowners’ insurance policies when in fact, Daniel knew that her company was not owed premiums.
Daniel faces eight counts of falsifying records for allegedly falsifying or uttering insurance policy records knowing the documents contained false information on eight occasions.
Daniel also faces a misconduct by a corporate official charge for allegedly purposely or knowingly using, controlling or operating Exodus Financial Services Inc. for the furtherance or promotion of criminal activity.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Third-degree charges carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000, and fourth-degree charges carry a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Deputy Attorney General Melvina D. Fennell presented the case to the grand jury for the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor (OIFP) under the supervision of Private Insurance Bureau Chief DAG Cheryl Maccaroni, Assistant Bureau Chief DAG Crystal Callahan, and Deputy Insurance Fraud Prosecutor AAG Al Garcia. The investigation was conducted by Detective Shawn McDonald of the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor under the supervision of Sergeant Brian Christensen, and Lieutenant Anne Hayes.
Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Tracy M. Thompson thanked Great American Insurance Company for referring the matter to OIFP.
Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Thompson noted that many 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 website 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.