Three Californians Indicted for Alleged Fraud Scheme Targeting Navy Personnel

by Andrew Murray | July 25th, 2019

On July 11, 2019, California’s Attorney General announced the indictment of three individuals from San Diego County for allegedly participating in an identity theft and tax fraud scheme targeting service members. The Press Release states:

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The defendants earned over $2 million in commissions related to sales of nearly 5,000 applications for life insurance policies and annuity contracts. Defendants Martin and Kalsi were arrested on July 8 and were arraigned July 10. They are currently in custody on $500,000 bail. Defendant Flanagan was arraigned today and will post $200,000 bail.

The arrests and indictments announced today are the result of a joint effort by the California Department of Justice, San Diego District Attorney’s Office, California Department of Insurance, Office of the Inspector General-Navy Region Southwest, and Naval Criminal Investigative Service. The investigation also received critical support from Naval Base San Diego and the Navy Region Legal Service Office Southwest Legal Assistance Department.

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The San Diego County Grand Jury issued a 69-count criminal indictment alleging that the defendants committed several crimes including: conspiracy to commit forgery, conspiracy to commit a crime, grand theft of personal property, forgery of documents, the illegal use of personal identifying information, and conspiracy to commit a form of insurance fraud known as “twisting.” Twisting involves making misrepresentations to consumers to induce them to take out insurance policies, which is a crime.

The indictment further alleges that defendants operated Go Navy Tax Services out of a trailer located just outside of Naval Base San Diego that advertised free income tax preparation services for military members. The trailer featured military seals and symbols meant to deceive service members into thinking that the business was affiliated with the United States Military. Further, during the free tax preparation service, defendants obtained personal identifying information from their victims and used it to open new bank accounts in the service members’ names. Those accounts were then used to pay the unauthorized insurance premiums.

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A copy of the indictment is available on the Attorney General’s website.


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