For Immediate Release: July 1, 2014

2013 Claim Leads to Arrest of Williamston Man for Alleged Insurance Fraud

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrest of Johnny Allen Bowen, 42, of 3820 Ed's Grocery Road, Williamston; he was charged with one count each of insurance fraud and attempting to obtain property by false pretense.

Department of Insurance criminal investigators allege that on Dec. 9, 2013, Bowen filed fraudulent insurance claims with Progressive and Liberty Mutual Insurance Companies stating that two of his vehicles were involved in an accident. Investigators accuse Bowen of staging the accident and receiving $19,982 in fraudulent claim payments from Liberty Mutual.

After a joint investigation by the Department of Insurance, Martin County Sheriff's Office and N.C. Dept. of Transportation Division of Motor Vehicle inspectors, Bowen was arrested on June 19 and placed under a $5,000 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 made more than 1,000 arrests, resulting in more than 500 criminal convictions with more than 200 cases currently pending court. These efforts have delivered more than $61 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 at www.ncdoi.com.

--NCDOI--