For Immediate Release: October 28, 2010

Guilford County Insurance Agent Accused of Embezzlement

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrest of Amy Clifton Smith, 37, of 3729 Cardinal Downs Drive, Greensboro. She is charged with one count of embezzlement by an insurance agent.

Department of Insurance criminal investigators accuse Smith of pocketing an undisclosed amount in insurance premiums between March and August of 2010 while employed as an insurance agent with N.C. Farm Bureau Insurance in Guilford County.

N.C. Farm Bureau Insurance's special investigators reported the alleged incident to the Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division in August. The insureds' policies were reinstated and made whole by the insurance company.

Smith was arrested on Oct. 27 and processed at the Guilford County Sheriff's Office. She was released on a written promise to appear and is scheduled to be in court on Dec. 2.

The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating claims of insurance fraud. So far in 2010, these criminal investigators have seen more than 268 cases successfully closed with more than $18.5 million in restitution and recoveries, 54 criminal convictions and 89 arrests.

An estimated 10 cents of every dollar paid in premiums goes toward the payment of fraudulent claims. To report suspected fraud, contact the Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division at 919-807-6840. Callers may remain anonymous. Information is also available at www.ncdoi.com.

--NCDOI--