For Immediate Release: February 9, 2011

Guilford County Man Pleads No Contest, Sentenced for Insurance Fraud Scheme

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced that William Richard McCutcheon, 55, of 4415 Pheasant Run Drive, Greensboro, has pleaded no contest to 20 charges including solicitation and obtaining property by false pretense.

McCutcheon, an insurance agent, was charged with defrauding 14 victims out of $1,951,811 between 1998 and 2006, by convincing them to invest in specific insurance products with the false promise that those investments would yield high returns with no chance of loss. Many of the victims lost their retirement savings, while McCutcheon earned a high commission (approximately 9 percent) on each of the investments that he sold.

He pleaded no contest before Superior Court Judge Richard Stone in Guilford County on Feb. 7 and received two suspended 45 day sentences and five years of supervised probation. McCutcheon was ordered to pay $95,478 in restitution-the amount of money he was paid in commission on the investments, as agreed upon by the prosecution and defense.

The charges came about as the result of a joint investigation by the Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division and the U.S. Postal Inspectors Service in Charlotte.

The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating claims of insurance fraud. In 2010, these criminal investigators have seen more than 402 cases successfully closed with more than $21.1 million in restitution and recoveries, 88 criminal convictions and 126 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--