Kissimmee Bail Bond Agency Owner and Employee Arrested
Contact: Ashley Carr
KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The Florida Department of Financial Services’ Division of Insurance Fraud today announced the arrests of Rafael Pietri, owner of Empire Bail Bonds in Kissimmee, and Victor Ortiz, a company employee. Pietri was arrested for employing a known convicted felon, Victor Ortiz, to work within his bail bond business. By law, convicted felons are barred from working within the bail bond industry. Ortiz has been arrested and sentenced on multiple drug and battery charges in several Florida counties.
An investigation by the Division of Insurance Fraud found that Empire Bail Bonds was utilized to bond Ortiz out of jail following several Osceola County arrests. The Department’s Division of Agent and Agency Services, which licenses bail bond agents in the state of Florida, provided assistance in the investigation and is seeking to suspend Pietri’s bail bond agent license.
Pietri and Ortiz both face up to 5 years in prison, if convicted. The case will be prosecuted by the office of 9th Judicial Circuit State Attorney Jeffrey Ashton.
Anyone with information about suspected insurance fraud is asked to call 1-800-378-0445. Citizens who provide tips can remain anonymous. The Department of Financial Services has awarded $365,000 to 63 citizens as part of its Anti-Fraud Reward Program. The program rewards individuals up to $25,000 for information that directly leads to an arrest and conviction in an insurance fraud scheme.
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Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, a statewide elected official, oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Atwater’s priorities include fighting financial fraud, abuse and waste in government, reducing government spending and regulatory burdens that chase away businesses, and providing transparency and accountability in spending. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).