For Immediate Release: February 21, 2012

Insurance Agent Pleads Guilty in Person County

Agent ordered to surrender insurance license after defrauding Medicare beneficiaries

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced that an insurance agent operating in Person County has pleaded guilty to six counts of misdemeanor larceny and was given a suspended sentence of 45 days in Person County Jail and 18 months of supervised probation.

Robert Seymour Stockham III, 45, of 8225 Coosa Court, Raleigh, pleaded guilty in Person County Superior Court on Feb. 20 to all standing charges. In addition to the suspended jail term and probation, Stockham was ordered to surrender his insurance license to the North Carolina Department of Insurance and pay $4,686.70 in restitution to his elderly victims.

Department of Insurance criminal investigators allege that from Nov. 1, 2008 to Dec. 31, 2008, while working as an insurance agent in the Roxboro area, Stockham accepted premium payments from victims in Person County and submitted falsified Medicare applications to Cigna Insurance Company, effectively cancelling the victims' prior insurance coverage.

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.

--NCDOI--