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Eric R. Dinallo   Superintendent of Insurance  25 Beaver Street  New York, N.Y. 10004

ISSUED 07/29/2008 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

INSURANCE FRAUD GUILTY PLEA LEADS TO DRUG REHAB SENTENCING

A Schoharie County couple was sentenced to a drug rehabilitation program on Wednesday for filing a bogus $20,000 insurance claim that unraveled because police had already discovered the car they reported stolen next to footprints leading to the couple’s home.

David B. Clark, 36, and his wife, Ann M. Clark, 35, of 631 Bearkill Rd., Conesville, were sentenced by Schoharie County Court Judge George R. Bartlett III. The judge said that if the Clarks violated the drug rehabilitation program, he would impose a maximum seven-year prison sentence against David Clark and one-year prison sentence against Ann Clark.

The Clarks earlier pleaded guilty to felony insurance fraud for attempting to cash in on an insurance claim they filed after reporting their car had been stolen last January. They told police that someone had broken into their home, taken their car keys and made off with the vehicle.

Police had actually discovered the car the day before the Clarks reported it stolen. Responding to a 911 call, police found the car unattended in a field where it had crashed into a tree. Police also found a six-pack of beer placed in the snow next to the car and footprints leading to the couple’s home. Police said there was no evidence of forced entry into the home.

David Clark later admitted he drove the car into the tree and left the scene of the accident.

Schoharie County District Attorney James Sackett commended the Department for its Special Prosecutor’s program, which assisted local authorities in investigating the case. Under the program, the Insurance Department provides assistance to resource-strained upstate counties in an effort to combat insurance fraud.

Mark Howard, of the Insurance Department’s Frauds Bureau, led the investigation. William P. Andrews, Assistant Counsel with the Bureau, assisted with the case.

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