Fake profiles used in insurance scam that netted Taranaki man $27k

A Taranaki man will be sentenced in the New Plymouth District Court next year after he pleaded guilty to obtaining more than $27,000 through deception. (File Photo)

ANDY JACKSON/Stuff

A Taranaki man will be sentenced in the New Plymouth District Court next year after he pleaded guilty to obtaining more than $27,000 through deception. (File Photo)

A New Plymouth man authorized to sell insurance used elaborately detailed yet fake profiles to fraudulently obtain more than $27,000 in commissions.

Heino Albert Jansen Van Rensburg owns and operates Accelerate Services Limited (ASL), which the New Zealand Companies Office describes as a financial service.

In November 2018, Partners Life Limited (PLL), which sells health and life insurance through a network of independent advisors, entered into a business agreement with ASL.

This authorized Jansen Van Rensburg to sell his insurance policies, in return for a commission.

An online portal was available for the defendant to use to submit applications when required.

The police summary of facts outlined how between May 5-7 last year, Jansen Van Rensburg lodged two fake applications.

The 40-year-old used an online portal to apply for insurance policies, using

UNSPLASH/Supplied

The 40-year-old used an online portal to apply for insurance policies, using “extensive” fake profiles. (File Photo)

The first was filed on May 5, under the name “Clifford Miller”.

Included in the application was “extensive personal information including date of birth, medical history, and employment information” of the fictitious client.

The application set up an insurance policy for Miller, for which ASL was paid a commission of $12,685.84.

PLL’s regular auditing picked up “several irregularities” with ASL’s clients, which led to a full review, looking for potential fraud, the summary of facts said.

The investigation found all the details given regarding Clifford Miller had been falsified.

It also found the bank account used to pay two of the monthly premiums connected to the policy came from a bank account which belonged to Jansen Van Rensburg.

The second fraud detected related to a May 7 application the defendant made, using the names “Patal Singh and Preet Sekhon”.

Creating fake client profiles to secure insurance policies netted a Taranaki man more than $27,000 in commissions he wasn't entitled to get. (File Photo)

Stuff

Creating fake client profiles to secure insurance policies netted a Taranaki man more than $27,000 in commissions he wasn’t entitled to get. (File Photo)

Based on fake details, an insurance policy was created for the duo, which netted Jansen Van Rensburg a $14,543.46 fee.

When police spoke to the defendant, he admitted the offending and said he did it to avoid becoming homeless “in a time of crisis”.

On Thursday, the 40-year-old appeared in the New Plymouth District Court, and pleaded guilty to a representative charge of obtaining by deception.

The charge carries a maximum imprisonment period of seven years.

Judge Gregory Hikaka remanded Jansen Van Rensburg on bail to reappear for sentencing on February 17.

The case was also referred to restorative justice.

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