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CFO Sink Bans Agent Who Misled Senior, Orders Son to Pay Restitution

3/1/2007

CONTACT:  Tara Klimek or Nina Banister 
                 (850) 413-2842   
 
OCALA—Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink announced today that she has permanently barred an insurance agent from involvement in Florida’s insurance industry and his son, also an agent, has been ordered to pay restitution for duping an elderly client into annuity deals that resulted in her suffering surrender charges and adverse tax consequences.
 
Hunter Stephen Bowen, Sr., 57, and Hunter Stephen Bowen Jr., 32, both of Ocala, allegedly convinced the woman to surrender several annuities, which she had bought over a period of time from Bowen, Sr., in favor of a new annuity carrying with it years of surrender charges.
 
“It is unconscionable that anyone would knowingly take advantage of a senior citizen who is relying on his or her advice to help with their financial security,” said CFO Sink.  “I especially encourage seniors who have any questions about financial decisions to call the department for guidance, because there are people out there who will target them because they have a lifetime of savings.”
 
In lieu of fighting the administrative charges filed against him, Bowen, Sr. agreed to the revocation of his license, and he is also permanently banned from the insurance business in Florida.
 
Hunter Stephen Bowen Jr. has been ordered to pay restitution of $6,000 and an administrative penalty of $2,500.  He has also been ordered to cease and desist from engaging in any future violations of the Insurance code, including conduct involving the misrepresentation of the terms or conditions of annuity or life insurance products. Misrepresentation in the sale of annuity and life insurance products may include either the misrepresentation of the terms and conditions of products and transactions, but also material omissions with respect to those products and transactions.
 
CFO Sink urges Floridians preparing to make financial decisions to read all documents, make sure their questions are answered and to verify information about agents and companies by logging on to www.fldfs.com or calling 1-800-342-2762.