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CFO Sink Announces Arrest of "Shameless" Scammer

5/13/2010

CONTACT: Jayme O’Rourke or Jennifer Hirst, 850-413-2842

TALLAHASSEE—Florida CFO and State Fire Marshal Alex Sink today announced the arrest of a Tallahassee man on charges of arson, insurance fraud and grand theft after her State Fire Marshal (SFM) and Insurance Fraud (DIF) investigators determined the suspect intentionally set fire to his yacht, a 50-foot SeaRay named “Shameless,” and then filed a false insurance claim for the purpose of collecting insurance benefits.

Arthur Freeman, 50, was arrested yesterday and booked into the Leon County jail. If convicted, he faces up to 65 years behind bars.
“Arson is a serious crime that puts the lives of innocent people and rescue personnel at risk, and we all pay for insurance fraud in the form of higher premiums. I hope this arrest sends a clear message to all ‘shameless’ criminals that their actions will not be tolerated,” said CFO Sink. “I commend the detectives in my law enforcement divisions who diligently worked this case and got to the truth of the fire.”

The arson was discovered when an evidence analysis established the presence of gasoline on the SeaRay, which runs on diesel fuel. The case has been turned over to the Fourteenth Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office for prosecution.

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