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

ISSUED 10/20/2008 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

EX-POUGHKEEPSIE INSURANCE AGENT PLEADS GUILTY TO THEFT

A Poughkeepsie man whose insurance agent’s license was revoked in 2005 pleaded guilty Thursday to theft from a health benefit plan for selling phony health insurance. He was charged with victimizing 240 people in Dutchess, Ulster and Columbia Counties.

Jeffrey C. Seifts, 51, of 184 Manchester Rd., entered the plea before Judge Lawrence Kahn in U.S. District Court in Albany. Seifts’s corporation, JC Seifts & Co., Inc., pleaded guilty to mail fraud. Sentencing was scheduled for Feb. 18.

Under the terms of the pleas, Seifts agreed to make restitution of more than $130,000. This includes payments of approximately $96,000 to individuals and $37,000 to MVP Health Care Inc. in Schenectady.

Seifts was arrested last year following an investigation begun in 2003 by the New York State Insurance Department.

The investigation stemmed from the complaint of a Dutchess County woman, who was unable to have her medical bills paid through insurance she purchased from Seifts. The Department was also contacted by MVP, which said it suspected irregularities in numerous health insurance applications it received from Seifts.

Investigators found that Seifts sold insurance to retirees, small business owners and others through the small group health plan he purportedly operated under the name of a fictitious company, Professional Employees Management Corp. (PEMC). Investigators said Seifts collected but failed remit premiums to MVP, overcharged customers, and falsified information on insurance applications.

The Department revoked Seifts’s insurance agent’s license in June 2005. He now has no authority to sell insurance, represent an insurance company or provide insurance advice to consumers.

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