- Attorney General Paula T. Dow and Division
of Criminal Justice Director Stephen J.
Taylor announced that a Gloucester County
mother and son have been indicted for their
alleged roles in a scheme to fraudulently
report the mother’s car stolen in
an attempt to collect insurance money.
to Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Ronald
Chillemi, Rosa M. DeSoto, 46, of Woodbury
and her son, Joshua G. DeSoto, 24, of Magnolia,
were each charged yesterday (Aug. 3) with
conspiracy, insurance fraud and attempted
theft by deception, all in the third degree.
Gloucester County grand jury indictment
alleges that between June 2 and June 18,
2007, Rosa and Joshua DeSoto conspired to
commit insurance fraud by falsely reporting
to the Woodbury Police Department that Rosa’s
2003 Honda had been stolen. The indictment
further alleges that the DeSotos submitted
a fraudulent auto theft claim with the Liberty
Mutual Insurance Company and attempted to
obtain approximately $13,500 for the purported
theft, even though they knew that the car
had not been stolen.
Detective Terrence Buie, Civil Investigator
Frank Crosson and Deputy Attorney General
Joan M. Burke were assigned to the investigation.
Burke presented the case to the Gloucester
County grand jury. Acting Prosecutor Chillemi
thanked Liberty Mutual Insurance Company,
the Philadelphia Police Department and the
Woodbury, New Jersey Police Department for
their assistance in the investigation.
indictment is merely an accusation and the
defendants are presumed innocent until proven
guilty. Third-degree crimes carry a maximum
punishment of five years in state prison
and a criminal fine of $15,000. Additionally,
the DeSoto’s may also face civil insurance
Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Chillemi noted
that some important cases have started with
anonymous tips. People who are concerned
about insurance cheating and have information
about a fraud can report it anonymously
by calling the toll-free hotline at 1-877-55-FRAUD,
or visiting the Web site at www.NJInsurancefraud.org.
State regulations permit a reward to be
paid to an eligible person who provides
information that leads to an arrest, prosecution
and conviction for insurance fraud.