For Immediate Release: January 9, 2019

Contact: Barry Smith at 919-807-6014

Special agents file arson, insurance fraud charges against Clay County man

RALEIGH -- North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey today announced the arrest of Brandon Goforth, 35, of 380 School Drive, Hayesville. Goforth was charged with felony second-degree arson, felony insurance fraud, and misdemeanor injury to real property.

According to arrest warrants, Goforth burned his single-wide modular home where he lived and attempted to collect on a renter’s insurance claim by telling Homesite Insurance he did not know the cause of the fire.

The offenses occurred between Dec. 10-12, 2018.

Special Agents with the Department of Insurance’s Criminal Investigations Division and Clay County sheriff’s deputies arrested Goforth on Jan. 2. He was placed in the Clay County Detention Center under a $15,000 secured bond and given a Jan. 14 court date.

Insurance fraud costs American consumers approximately $80 billion dollars a year. According to Commissioner Causey, fraud costs North Carolinians between 15 and 20 cents of every dollar paid on insurance premiums -- and it’s getting worse.

"I am determined to stem the tide of insurance fraud in this state in order to save residents money," said Commissioner Causey. "That's why I am dedicated to the mission of our NCDOI law enforcement officers who investigate and prosecute claims of insurance and bail bonding fraud."

To report suspected fraud, contact the N.C. Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division at 919-807-6840. Callers may remain anonymous. Information is also available at www.ncdoi.com.

--NCDOI--