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Gallagher Announces Arrest of Miami Man for Selling Worthless Hurricane Insurance

8/25/2005

CONTACT:
Tami Torres or Nina Banister  
(850) 413-2842
 
TALLAHASSEE – Florida's Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher today announced the arrest of Allen E. Weintraub, 40, of Miami, for selling worthless hurricane insurance to at least 45 consumers.  Weintraub set up an unlicensed operation called Global Insurance Group and collected more than $100,000 for non-existent windstorm insurance.  Three weeks ago, Gallagher warned Floridians to beware that Global was selling bogus policies.
 
 Weintraub was booked into the Miami-Dade County Jail early today on 45 counts of grand theft and 45 counts of transacting insurance activity without a certificate of authorization, in addition to one count of organizing a scheme to defraud.  Bond was set at $510,000.
 
"I applaud our fraud detectives for moving quickly to put this scam operator behind bars," said Gallagher, who oversees the Department of Financial Services' Division of Insurance Fraud.  "Selling bogus hurricane insurance to people in the middle of hurricane season is reprehensible.  I am relieved that we were able to shut this scheme down before more Floridians were defrauded and left vulnerable to storms."
 
Weintraub used licensed agents to sell his bogus policies to homeowners and businesses. In one case, the agent cancelled legitimate insurance and switched to a Global policy.  Gallagher said that Floridians dealing with a licensed agent should still verify that the company offering coverage is licensed.   To check on the license status of a company or agent, consumers should visit www.fldfs.com, and click on Verify Before You Buy, or call the department's helpline at 1-800-342-2762.
 
Weintraub's arrest, at his multi-million dollar home in Golden Beach, follows on the heels of recent action taken against him by the Securities and Exchange Commission which barred him from the securities industry and ordered him to pay more than $1 million in restitution and fines.
The Department of Financial Services, Division of Insurance Fraud, investigates various forms of fraud in insurance, including health, life, auto, property and workers' compensation insurance.  Anyone with information about this case or another possible fraud scheme should call the department's Anti-Fraud Hotline at 1-800-378-0445.  A reward of up to $25,000 may be offered for information leading to a conviction. 

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As a statewide elected officer of the Florida Cabinet, Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher oversees the Department of Financial Services, a multi-division state agency responsible for management of state funds and unclaimed property, assisting consumers who request information and help related to financial services, and investigating financial fraud. Gallagher also serves as the State Fire Marshal.