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Former Calif. insurance agent sentenced to a year in jail

By Ventura County Star, Calif.
McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

Dec. 01--A former Newbury Park insurance agent has been sentenced to a year in county jail and placed on five years of probation after being convicted of creating and submitting false long-term insurance applications, authorities said Friday.

Vincent Christopher Bellucci, 42, submitted the applications to an insurer, said California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones.

Bellucci also was ordered to pay restitution of $69,003.62 and fines and penalties in excess of $2,000.

"Agents who prey on insurers will be brought to justice," Jones said in a news release. "I commend the investigators and prosecutor for ending the illegal practices of this unscrupulous former agent."

Bellucci created and submitted bogus long-term-care insurance applications to an insurer from December 2009 through July 2010, according to investigators from the California Department of Insurance.

Jones said the applications contained false names, addresses and income information for the applicants. Investigators said they also found Bellucci impersonated some of the insurance applicants by telephone when the insurer conducted follow-up personal-history interviews.

Upon submission of the phony applications, Bellucci received advance commissions that he was not legally entitled to, Jones said. The insurer suffered losses in excess of $82,000, Jones said.

Bellucci pleaded guilty in Ventura County Superior Court on Sept. 24 to one felony count of grand theft and admitted a special allegation that he stole property with a value exceeding $65,000, Jones said.

Bellucci's insurance license expired Aug. 31, 2011.

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(c)2012 Ventura County Star (Camarillo, Calif.)

Visit Ventura County Star (Camarillo, Calif.) at www.vcstar.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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