According to Insurance Journal, Farouk Soliman, 73, of Little Silver, New Jersey, has been indicted on insurance fraud and theft by deception charges as of early August.
Soliman claimed that a tree fell on his barn, destroying it during Hurricane Sandy in October of 2012. The claim had been submitted shortly after the storm in November of 2012 and Soliman was seeking $5,500 in damages. Acting Attorney General John Hoffman contradicts this claim, as investigators uncovered that the barn had been deemed “structurally unsafe” in February of 2012.
Natural Disaster Fraud or “Disaster Scams” are more common than the public seems to believe. Fraudsters will capitalize on any opportunity, including times of misfortune in the days after a natural disaster or major storm. Most frequently, a homeowner will inflate the damages or make up a claim entirely. With the help of diligent investigators assisting in the process of disproving fraudulent claims, we can keep damages and premiums to a minimum and rightfully pay settlements to the deserving.
If Farouk Soliman is convicted on both insurance fraud and theft by deception counts, he could face up to 15 years in prison.