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For Immediate Release
July 15, 2003
Contact: Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
scaine@oag.state.md.us

FORMER INSURANCE COMPANY EMPLOYEE JAILED FOR THEFT

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr., announced today that Chinetta M. Coles, 30, of Woodlawn, was sentenced to serve five years in prison, with all but 12 months suspended, after being convicted of felony theft in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County. Coles pled guilty to stealing $110,983.97 from her former employer, State Farm Insurance Company.

According to the statement of facts given in support of the plea, Coles, an assistant to claims examiners in the Owings Mills Office of State Farm, opened closed automobile claims files and wrote checks that she then deposited into her personal bank account using automated teller machines. From August 1998 to March 2001, Coles wrote 51 checks after opening some 37 claims files and then re-closing them. Upon learning of Coles’ thefts, State Farm terminated her employment and reported the crimes to the Maryland Insurance Administration, Insurance Fraud Division.

Judge Patrick Cavanaugh imposed the sentence and additionally ordered Coles to pay full restitution to State Farm. He also ordered Coles to perform 500 hours of community service.

The indictment followed a joint investigation conducted by the Insurance Fraud Division of the Maryland Insurance Administration and the Office of the Attorney General.

 

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