For Immediate Release: February 17, 2012

Wake County Car Salesman Arrested in Alleged Insurance Scheme

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrest of Erick Antonio Brinkley, 47, of 2800 Hunters Retreat Court, Zebulon; he is charged with six counts of obtaining property by false pretense.

Investigators allege that between January 2010 and February 2011, Brinkley - while working as a car salesman for Capital Boulevard Auto Sales of Raleigh, now doing business as Hollingsworth Auto Sales - collected premiums from customers for Guaranteed Auto Protection insurance but did not file the paperwork with the insurer, Express Systems Incorporated.

Brinkley is accused of accepting premium payments from six customers in the amount of $4,070 without filing GAP insurance paperwork with the insurer; as a result, one of those customers incurred $1,421.15 in uninsured expenses in a car accident.

Brinkley was arrested on Feb. 16 at the Wake County Jail and is being held under a $40,000 secured bond.

The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn state law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating and prosecuting claims of insurance and bail bonding fraud. Since Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin took office in 2009, criminal investigators have received more than 13,500 complaints, resulting in 575 arrests, 320 criminal convictions and more than 100 pending court cases. These efforts have delivered more than $47.9 million in restitution and recoveries for victims.

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 on the Department of Insurance website.