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Wilmington trio arrested for alleged auto insurance fraud


RALEIGH, NC (NEWS RELEASE) -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrests of Alfonzo Bethea, 39, of Wilmington; Antonette Denise Waters, 29, of 621 N. 10th St., Wilmington; and Crystal Paige Waters, 30, of 1003 S. 14th St., Wilmington. Each has been charged with two counts of insurance fraud, two counts of attempting to obtain property by false pretense, and one count of filing a false police report.

Department of Insurance and Wilmington Police Department investigators allege that on Jan. 20, 2012, Antonette Waters was the sole occupant of a vehicle involved in a traffic crash at Dawson Street and S. 14th Street in Wilmington. Alfonzo Bethea and Crystal Waters are accused of getting into the vehicle before police arrived on the scene. All three individuals reported to police that they were occupants of the vehicle at the time of the crash and filed insurance claims with GEICO Insurance and Universal Insurance for property damage and medical expenses.

All three were arrested on Aug. 14, processed at the Wilmington Police Department, and placed under a $1,500 unsecured bond.

The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn state law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating and prosecuting claims of insurance and bail bonding fraud. Since Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin took office in 2009, criminal investigators have received more than 14,000 complaints, resulting in 602 arrests, 333 criminal convictions and more than 110 pending court cases. These efforts have delivered more than $48.5 million in restitution and recoveries for victims.

An estimated 10 cents of every dollar paid in premiums goes toward the payment of fraudulent claims. To report suspected fraud, contact the Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division at 919-807-6840. Callers may remain anonymous.

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