|JOHN A. GREENE
ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF INSURANCE
2910 North 44th Street, Suite 210, Phoenix, Arizona 85018-7256 · (602) 912-8456 · FAX: (602) 912-8452
|Contact:||Terry L. Cooper
Fraud Unit Chief
|Tel: 602-912-8418||FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
|Fax: 602-912-8419||March 28, 1997|
TWO ARRESTED ON HEALTH INSURANCE FRAUD CHARGES
The Arizona Department of Insurance Fraud Unit, assisted by agents from the Attorney Generals Office, executed search warrants on two residences at 4200 East Palm Lane and 2300 North 40th Street regarding a suspected multi-thousand dollar health insurance fraud. Arrested during the service of the search warrants were Christopher Slicker, 29 years old and Russell Smith, 25 years old. The search and the arrests occurred on March 27, 1997.
The Fraud Units investigation revealed that Smith worked as a claims representative for a local health insurance company. Smith and Slicker, an ex-detention officer from the Colorado Department of Corrections,. allegedly fabricated medical insurance claims and submitted them to the insurance company under a fraudulent doctors name and address. Smith and Slicker allegedly established a bogus bank account to launder the claim checks received in the suspected fraudulent operation.
Both Smith and Slicker were booked at the Maricopa County Jail charged with fraudulent schemes and fourteen other related felonies.
"Insurance fraud ranks second to tax evasion as the most costly white-collar crime in America," says Terry Cooper, Fraud Unit Chief. "The average American household pays an estimated $200 a year in additional premiums to make up for the fraud."
The Fraud Unit, established in July 1994, targets individuals and entities who commit all types of fraud against insurance companies.