NEWS RELEASE
Office of Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr.


April 11, 2001 Media Inquiries: Sean Caine 410-576-6357

D.C. COP PLEADS GUILTY IN INSURANCE SCAM

Baltimore - Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr., announced today that James Wesley Warren, Jr., 35, of Prince George's County, was convicted of Attempted Felony Theft after pleading guilty before Prince George's County Circuit Court Judge Joseph S. Casula. Warren acknowledged his guilt in a plan to submit false lost wage documents to Geico Insurance when the prosecution was preparing to rest its case during the second day of the jury trial.

Warren was allowed to remain free on his own recognizance pending sentencing, which is scheduled to take place on June 8, 2001. Under the terms of the plea, the State will seek incarceration, while Warren will argue for probation before judgment.

According to evidence presented by the state, Warren was involved in a motor vehicle accident in Prince George's County on May 29, 1999. He then hired John Critzos, II, a personal injury lawyer in Oxon Hill, and sought medical treatment for soft tissue injuries. Warren submitted lost wage forms to his attorney indicating lost time from both the Metropolitan Police Department and a part-time job as a security officer at a Washington, D.C. McDonald's restaurant. Critzos then submitted the documents as part of a demand to settle Warren's claim. Geico claims adjusters noticed that the reports from Warren's doctors indicated that Warren was working at the time of his treatment. Geico's investigation revealed that at least part of the lost wages were false and denied payment of the $4,697.20 claimed. Geico notified the Internal Affairs Division of the Metropolitan Police Department of the suspicious wage documents and the case was sent to the Insurance Fraud Division of the Maryland Insurance Administration. An investigation by the Maryland State Police and Maryland Office of the Attorney General followed.

"Insurance fraud is a very costly crime and we are vigorously committed to reducing it, and to holding all who perpetrate these crimes accountable," Attorney General Curran said.

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