jump to main menu jump to subject menu jump to content jump to footer

Division of Investigative and Forensic Services

News and Announcements

 

The Division of Investigative & Forensic Services
is pleased to announce the 2017 FIFEC award recipients and nominees:


Law Enforcement Investigator of the Year

Detective Frank Shipman

Dective Frank Shipman - Law Enforcement Investigator of the Year
Division of Investigative & Forensic Services – Miami Field Office

Detective Shipman dismantled a major staged accident ring in South Florida. The main target was identified in Miami Dade County as the leader and organizer of a staged motor vehicle accident ring which since 2011 was responsible for more than $1,000,000 in fraudulent billing. From this investigation, four cases of staged motor vehicle accidents evolved, and as of May 2017, 9 participants of this fraud scheme including the organizer along with 4 recruiters have been arrested.

Additional DIFS nominees

Kerrian Lindsay, Division of Investigative & Forensic Services – Ft. Lauderdale Field Office

Det. Kerrian Lindsay - Investigator of the Year Nominee

Detective Kerrian Lindsay was nominated for her out‐ standing work on two straw owner clinic investigations in 2016 and her working relationship with the insurance industry. Det. Lindsay working with the insurance industry, the Broward State Attorney’s Office and NICB obtained arrest warrants for five (5) individuals, including two licensed Chiropractic Physicians (DC) involved in two straw owner clinic cases. Det. Lindsay has been with the Bureau of Insurance Fraud for several years and has exemplified the professionalism and commitment of the Bureau of Insurance Fraud in working with the insurance industry professionals in investigating and com‐ batting insurance fraud.


Francis Agoglia, Division of Investigative & Forensic Services – Miami Field Office

Det. Francis Agoglia - Investigator of the Year Nominee

Detective Francis Agoglia started his career with the Bureau of Insurance Fraud in 2014 and was nominated for his on-going efforts in investigating shell companies committing premium fraud in Dade and Broward Counties. Det. Agoglia arrested a licensed insurance agent who was responsible for obtaining and issuing fraudulent worker’s compensation insurance policies for various shell construction companies. Although, he was a newly hired detective, Det. Agoglia works hard, stays focused, and never allows obstacles to stifle his abilities to investigate complex worker’s compensation cases.


Stephen Thurber, Division of Investigative & Forensic Services – Orlando Field Office

Det. Stephen Thurber - Investigator of the Year Nominee

Detective Stephen Thurber was nominated for his outstanding work while investigating a PIP clinic in Orlando, that was unlicensed and operating under an exemption from licensing based on the “Straw Ownership” of a licensed chiropractor. As a result of this Investigation, a licensed chiropractor and the clinics true owner were arrested and charged with numerous felony charges, including the operation of an unlicensed health care clinic. Det. Thurber is dedicated, determined, highly motivated, and a self‐starter with excellent communication skills.


Rafael Torres, Division of Investigative & Forensic Services – Orlando Field Office

Det. Rafael Torres - Investigator of the Year Nominee

Detective Rafael Torres was nominated for his outstanding work involving a PIP clinic in Orlando. As a result of this investigation, the two owners pled guilty to a Scheme to Defraud, operating an Unlicensed Health Care Clinic. This investigation involved many interviews over the course of more than a year and a half and involved investigators from about a dozen different insurance companies. The investigation yielded evidence which generated a separate Medicaid Fraud case resulting in a joint operation conducted by the DFS‐BIF and the Attorney General’s Orlando Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and the US Dept. of Homeland Security.


Group Achievement Award- Insurance Fraud Fighter’s Team Award

Lieutenant Carlos Rosario
Detective Phil Henry
Detective Jada Roberson
Detective Miguel Mora
Detective Rick Warnel

with special recognition to Goverment Analyst Lisa Gonzalez for her assistance in the investigation.

Group Achievement Award - Insurance Fraud Fighter's Team Award

Division of Investigative & Forensic Services- Tampa Field Office

The Tampa Auto Fraud Squad’s investigation resulted in criminal charges / arrests of
two Licensed Chiropractors and two Registered Chiropractic Assistants. Total fraud value was estimated at $1,000,000.


Analyst of the Year Award Nominee

Fayson Smith, CIA – North Central Region Bureau of Insurance Fraud

Fayson Smith - Analyst of the Year Nominee
Fayson Smith has been with the Division of Investigative and Forensic Services since May 2016. In the short time he has been with the Division, he has shown an incredible work ethic and never slows down. He is assigned to two Orlando squads, but often completes work for four squads in our Orlando office. In his first month of employment, Fayson jumped right in and completed over 30 requests for assistance and has recorded over 1300 case hours in just the short year he has been with the Division. He has also successfully completed two Florida Department of Law Enforcement academy week‐long classes and plans to attend the FDLE Analyst Academy in the future. Fayson has been instrumental in multiple cases identifying and organizing bank records there by assisting the detectives in understanding the systematic flow of funds associated with the fraud.


2017 Jerry Zappolo Distinguished Service Award Nominee

Howard Pohl, Senior Attorney – Division of Investigative and Forensic Services

Howard Pohl - 2017 Zappolo Distinguished Service Award Nominee
Senior Attorney Howard Pohl is being nominated for his dedicated service and accomplishments during his 6 ½ years with Department of Financial Services, Division of Investigative and Forensic Services. Howard started with the Department of Financial Services in November 2010 after working with the Miami Dade State Attorney’s Office. He has over 28 years of legal experience, as well as, a CPA background that has been a huge benefit to the agency. Upon joining the Division, Howard hit the ground running addressing many service requests from DIFS offices around the state. He spent endless hours assisting the Divisions’ personnel with inquiries regarding case law and interpreting statutes. Howard maintained an excellent working relationship with insurance industry members, NICB and the various State Attorney’s Office always exploring new and innovative ways to enhance case referrals, case presentations, and prosecution of insurance fraud cases. His experience, legal expertise and willingness to assist Detectives in DIFS as well as, the insurance industry resulted in an increased work load for which Howard gladly welcomed. As Howard became more familiar with our unique inner workings, he was tasked with providing specific training to agency personnel. He was also tasked with monitoring and providing feedback on legislative matters as it related to the Division. As a result, Howard has been requested to represent the agency at numerous conferences, meetings and presentations to discuss insurance fraud as a whole.


Congratulations again to all our recipients and nominees.
Thank you for your hard work and dedication in the fight against fraud.