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Arizona man found guilty of staging car crashes to collect insurance

A federal jury has recently convicted a Yuma man of conspiring with others to submit fraudulent claims to insurance companies by staging car crashes.

YUMA, Ariz. — An Arizona contractor has been found guilty of fraud after he staged incidents in order to collect insurance payouts. 

Isrrael Millan III, 40, of Yuma was found guilty last week in federal court of multiple counts of wire fraud and money laundering, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office of Arizona.

The defendant recruited others to help him stage destructive events that they could later use to file insurance claims. 

Prosecutors said Millan borrowed two vehicles in October 2018 to stage a collision in Yuma. The following month, the defendant arranged to have a man's home flooded and was later paid by the insurance company to perform restoration work on the property, court records show.

Another flooding incident was staged in December 2018.

In June 2019, the defendant allegedly orchestrated an incident involving a U-Haul truck that crashed into a local liquor store. Prosecutors say Millan instructed the store's owner to file an insurance claim so he could be paid to fix the property.

"The insurance carrier for (the) U-Haul truck suspected the insurance claim involved fraud, did not make payments out on the claim, and instead reported the incident to the Federal Bureau of Investigation," court records state.

The jury convicted Millan of one count of conspiracy to commit fraud, eight counts of wire fraud, two counts of mail fraud, and four counts of money laundering. 

Millan is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 23, 2023.

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