A former licensed public adjuster will spend 10 years in prison for <embezzlement . Jose Villa pleaded no contest in Los Angeles County Superior Court to eight felony fraud charges. According to prosecutors, Villa diverted insurance payouts to fire victims for his own personal use. In addition to the felony charges, Villa also admitted special allegations of excessive taking and white-collar crime.
Prosecutors say that Villa deposited the payouts into his business checking account. Prior to his arrest, Villa owned Statewide Claims Advisors, Inc. The fire damage claims at the center of the case arose on a commercial property and a residential rental property. Villa told Whittier and Los Angeles claimants that he would use the money to pay for demolition and reconstruction costs. Instead, he used the money for his personal expenses.
This isn’t Villa’s first appearance in court. A jury convicted Villa last May of embezzlement and forgery related to a similar scam. In those cases, Villa also took proceeds from fire victims’ claims. As a result of his first conviction, Villa received a 7-year sentence. The new 10-year sentence will run concurrently with that sentence. In addition, the judge imposed a $10,000 fine and ordered Villa to pay restitution of $1.2 million. The California Department of Insurance revoked Villa’s public adjuster license. The agency also permanently barred him from working in the insurance industry in California.
Los Angeles embezzlement lawyer
When you face fraud charges, your best defense strategy is to hire an experienced embezzlement lawyer like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has nearly 35 years of criminal courtroom defense experience. He takes cases in Los Angeles County and throughout Southern California.
Embezzlement convictions can result in lengthy prison sentences. In addition, judges will often impose significant restitution requirements and fines. Depending upon the nature of the case, a licensed professional risks permanent loss of his or her professional credentials. For a defendant, the stakes are very high!
Don’t risk your livelihood, freedom and financial well-being on an inexperienced attorney, or one who won’t fight aggressively for you. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County embezzlement case.
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