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CFO Jimmy Patronis Announces Six Arrests in $70,000 West Palm Beach Insurance Fraud Scheme

2/1/2022

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis announced the arrest of Darneshia Hodge, Michelle O'Brien, Martine Charles, Chastity Barry, Cocynthia Hodge and Glennesha Scantlebury for allegedly developing a fraudulent insurance claim scheme involving multiple Aflac insurance claim reimbursement payments totaling more than $71,000.
 
CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “Filing fake insurance claims to make a quick buck is an easy way to end up in jail. As CFO, I remain committed to ensuring criminals like this are brought to justice. Fraud affects everyone in Florida as it drives up insurance rates across the board. I applaud the dedication of my fraud detectives for their hard work to uncover this elaborate scheme, and I appreciate the Palm Beach State Attorney's Office’s commitment to ensure justice is served in this case.”
 
An investigation by CFO Patronis’ Division of Investigative and Forensic Services, Bureau of Insurance Fraud detectives determined between November 2017 and January 2020, six Aflac policyholders were allegedly creating and submitting forged and fraudulent medical records as verification of medical services that were never rendered. Four of the individuals were currently or formerly employed by a West Palm Beach neurosurgery office and used their knowledge of medical billing practices to create the fraudulent records. After completing the records, they would then submit them as proof of visits and treatments to Aflac for reimbursements. The suspects allegedly received a total of $71,695 in fraudulently obtained funds paid by Aflac.
 
On January 28, 2022, Michelle O’Brien, Chasity Barry, Cocynthia Hodge, Darneshia Hodge, Martine Charles and Glennesha Scantlebury were booked into the Palm Beach County jail. Charges for the six subjects range from organized scheme to defraud, false and fraudulent insurance claims and obtaining possession of a controlled substance by fraud.
 
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About CFO Jimmy Patronis 
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).