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Members of Pasco insurance fraud ring take pleas

NEW PORT RICHEY — Four people who were implicated this year in an insurance fraud scheme pleaded in court Thursday were sentenced to probation and ordered to repay thousands of dollars.

In March, investigators with the state Department of Financial Services said former Zurich Insurance Group claims adjuster Donald Alfred Toohey III created fictitious claims on behalf of "clients" who did not have real policies.

Authorities say Toohey fabricated 26 fraudulent claims between August 2004 and June 2009 totaling $242,657.

He would create a fraudulent file and claim on each co-conspirator, who would then receive checks from $8,800 to more than $67,000.

Toohey always got a cut.

The others arrested in the scheme were Brian Frederick Kneifer and Anthony Michael Kneifer, 27-year-old twins, and Scott Addison Kincaid, 44, and Tricia Ann Allen, 28, who are cousins. Kincaid and the Kneifers live in New Port Richey. Allen lives in Spring Hill.

They were originally charged with grand theft and conspiracy to commit grand theft, but the second charge was later dropped on each.

Allen pleaded guilty Thursday to grand theft and was sentenced to five years of probation and more than $16,000 in restitution to the insurance company.

Kincaid pleaded no contest to grand theft and was sentenced to two years of probation and more than $11,000 in restitution.

The Kneifer brothers also pleaded guilty to grand theft, received five years of probation and were ordered to repay more than $2,000 in restitution apiece.

Toohey's charges of grand theft and conspiracy to commit grand theft are still pending. The other defendants agreed to testify against him.

Molly Moorhead can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 869-6245.

Members of Pasco insurance fraud ring take pleas 10/14/10 [Last modified: Thursday, October 14, 2010 8:02pm]
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