For Immediate Release
March 17, 2011
Catherine L. Bernhard,Senior Assistant Attorney General
Insurance Fraud Unit Prosecutor
Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau
(603) 271-2898 or (603) 271-7973 x 235
Attorney General Michael A. Delaney and Insurance Commissioner Roger A. Sevigny announced today the conviction of Audrey Dion for Forgery. Ms. Dion pleaded guilty to creating two false Insurance Certificates and signing each with the name of a licensed insurance producer. Ms. Dion issued the false certificates to a local construction company in an attempt to win a bid to provide subcontracting services.
On March 16, 2011, a hearing was held at the Concord District Court at which Ms. Dion pleaded guilty to two Class B misdemeanor forgery charges for issuing the false insurance certificates. Ms. Dion was sentenced as a result of a negotiated plea bargain. As part of her sentence, Ms. Dion will be required to pay a fine of $500 plus a statutory penalty assessment and a court fee. On the second charge, the Court imposed a fine of $1200 which is suspended for a period of one year.
The NH Insurance Department's Fraud Unit received the complaint about the false certificates of insurance when the producer whose name appeared on the certificates was questioned by the administrator of a local construction company about the certificates' authenticity. The business was informed that the certificates were not legitimate. When Ms. Dion was questioned by the investigator for the Fraud Unit about the matter, she admitted that she signed the producer's name to the form, without any authorization.
The prosecution of this crime in the District Court is an effort by the NH Insurance Department and the NH Department of Justice Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau to deter the issuance of fraudulent certificates of insurance, and to impress upon the public the importance of verifying the existence and the limits of insurance coverage before entering into a contractual relationship with a business or individual for goods or services. The certificate should be signed by a licensed NH insurance producer and verification can be made through the producer or the insurance company.
The conviction is the result of collaboration between the Attorney General's Office and the NH Insurance Department Fraud Unit. The Fraud Unit was formed under RSA 417 to investigate and prosecute Insurance Fraud and other insurance-related criminal activity with the assistance of the NH Department of Justice.
New Hampshire Department of Justice | 33 Capitol Street | Concord, NH | 03301