Insurance Fraud Program Honors Virginia Fraud Fighters
RICHMOND, VA – The Virginia State Police (VSP) Insurance Fraud Program (IFP) presented awards to six individuals in recognition of their efforts to fight insurance fraud in the commonwealth. The awards ceremony took place on April 22, 2021 during the Virginia Chapter of the International Association of Special Investigation Units (VAIASIU) annual conference held in Richmond, Virginia.
The first three awards were presented to Senior Investigator Eric Flick, Virginia Bureau of Insurance, Detective Michael Bowser, Chesterfield County Police Department, and Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Ben Garrison, Commonwealth’s Attorney Office of Chesterfield County. They demonstrated team work and interagency collaboration—working together to successfully investigate and prosecute a case involving an insurance agent who diverted more than $100,000 in insurance premiums for his personal use.
The next award was presented to Special Agent Edward Brown, Virginia State Police, Bureau of Investigation, Fairfax Field Office. He was recognized for his diligent and thorough investigations of insurance fraud cases, highlighting one fraudulent auto insurance claim for more than $3,500 and a guilty plea of obtaining money by false pretense from the defendant.
Damian Lane, Virginia Social Services Fraud Prevention and Investigation Unit, was honored with a Fraud Fighters Award for the second year in a row, for his consistent contributions as an investigator and trainer. His efforts last year resulted in total savings of more than $550,000.
The final award Fraud Fighters Award was presented to Senior Special Agent Barry Tuggle, Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Appomattox Field Office. He conducted an investigation of a disability insurance fraud case that resulted in $24,000 in restitution and a Felony conviction of obtaining money by false pretense.
“We are grateful to law enforcement officers, investigators and Commonwealth Attorneys from throughout Virginia who join with the Virginia State Police in fighting insurance fraud,” said First Sergeant Keeli Hill, Insurance Fraud Program Coordinator. “These annual awards are an opportunity to show our appreciation and to recognize outstanding efforts.”
The annual Fraud Fighters Award program was developed in 2003 to assist in stemming the growing incidence of insurance fraud in Virginia by recognizing individuals for their special efforts in insurance fraud reduction. The award is sponsored by the Virginia State Police Insurance Fraud Program. Awards are presented to insurance companies’ fraud investigators, commonwealth’s attorneys and members of Virginia’s law enforcement community who have made exemplary efforts in helping reduce insurance fraud in Virginia.
In addition to the Insurance Fraud Program’s Fraud Fighters Awards, VAIASIU presented the Outstanding Public Service Award to Captain Norman Gray, Virginia State Police.