For Immediate Release: June 17, 2011

Department of Insurance Investigation Leads to Wake County Woman's Arrest

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrest of Karen Barbour, 50, of 3000 Crimson Tree Court, Raleigh; she is charged with one count of insurance fraud, one count of obtaining property by false pretense, and one count of attempting to obtain property by false pretense.

Department of Insurance criminal investigators allege that after Barbour filed an insurance claim for missing jewelry in January 2011, she received $6,465 from North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance. Barbour filed another claim in March 2011 for additional missing jewelry. However, investigators allege that the jewelry was not in fact missing and that Barbour received the funds fraudulently.

Barbour was arrested and processed in Wake County on June 15. She was placed under a $10,000 unsecured bond and was scheduled to appear in Wake County Court on June 16.

The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating claims of insurance fraud. In 2010, these criminal investigators successfully closed 402 cases and made 126 arrests, leading to 88 criminal convictions. These resulted in more than $21.1 million in restitution and recoveries-more than double the dollar amount from the previous year and a record for NCDOI.

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--