Local News

Agents bust scheme to stage wrecks, defraud insurers

Posted October 15, 2009 12:33 p.m. EDT
Updated October 15, 2009 12:37 p.m. EDT

— Authorities say they have arrested seven Robeson County residents in two-year investigation of a scheme to stage wrecks and defraud health insurance companies.

Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and state Department of Insurance investigated the scheme, which involved at least seven staged accidents and netted $131,000 for the conspirators.

Barbara Mercedes Thompson, 29, and Derrick Devon Thompson, 30 – both of 361 Pinwheel Circle in Lumberton – and Dormaine K. Baker, 34, of 970 Benson Chapel Road in Rowland, were arrested Thursday.

All were charged with insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretenses and conspiracy to commit insurance fraud and obtaining property by false pretenses. They were being held in the Robeson County jail Thursday under separate $10,000 unsecured bonds.

Investigators said that the Thompsons and Baker staged a wreck in July 2006 then submitted false medical bills to insurer AIG, Inc. AIG paid out approximately $21,000 to the three, investigators said.

In August, agents arrested Chassa Marie Blue, Eboni Adelle Moore, Matthew Solomon Green and Diedra Joann Werrell, all of Rowland.

Those four are accused of staging six traffic accidents and filing medical and lost-wage claims amounting to $115,000.

To report suspected fraud, contact the Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division at 919-807-6840. Callers may remain anonymous.