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CFO Patronis Announces Arrest of Two Public Adjusters in $136,000 Miami Insurance Fraud Scheme

8/7/2023
For Immediate Release: Monday, August 7, 2023
Contact: Office of Communications, Communications@MyFloridaCFO.com, 850.413.2842

CFO Patronis Announces Arrest of Two Public Adjusters in $136,000 Miami Insurance Fraud Scheme

MIAMI, Fla. – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis announced the arrest of David Alexander Jr. Caballero, an All Lines Public Adjuster, Alexander Castellanos, a former All Lines Adjuster and owner of Prestige Restoration & Renovation Inc., and homeowner Jennifer Ann Perez for conspiring to defraud Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (Citizens) of more than $136,000 by allegedly submitting fraudulent insurance claims related to the homeowner's air conditioner, water roof leak and tarp installation.

CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “One of my top priorities as your CFO is cracking down on fraud and scams that drive up insurance rates for every Florida policyholder. Insurance fraud is a costly crime and it’s especially despicable when committed by a licensed insurance adjuster trying to game the system. My fraud teams have done outstanding work investigating insurance fraud statewide and prosecuting bad actors to the full extent of the law. Fraud causes insurance rates hikes and are a detriment to Floridians across the state with property insurance. Huge thanks to the team at Citizens, the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office, and our fraud detectives for uncovering this scheme and bringing these fraudsters to face justice.”

Citizens President/CEO and Executive Director Tim Cerio said,  “I would like to thank CFO Patronis and his team for their tireless efforts to root out fraud in the property insurance market. These cooperative efforts are critical for bringing stability back to the Florida market, which benefits all Florida policyholders.”

An investigation by the Florida Department of Financial Services’ Division of Investigative and Forensic Services, Bureau of Insurance Fraud discovered that homeowner Jennifer Ann Perez and public adjuster David Alexander Jr. Caballero allegedly conspired to file a fraudulent homeowners insurance claim by using fraudulent supporting documents related to water damage and a roof leak. In 2021, Perez hired David Alexander Jr. Caballero to file a homeowners insurance claim with Citizens. During the claims process, Caballero would allegedly stage Perez’s home to show sustained accidental water and roof damages. He would also coach her on exactly what to say to the insurance adjuster from Citizens ensuring that she would not say that her damages were preexisting. Then, Caballero hired Castellanos of Prestige Restoration & Renovation, Inc. to perform the property restoration knowing that there was no active roof leak. In addition, Castellanos forged the signature of Jennifer Perez on the Assignment of Benefits agreement to allow him to execute the work.

Further investigation determined that David Alexander Jr. Caballero attempted to defraud Citizens of approximately $102,000 by submitting fraudulent homeowner water damage and roof claims. Alexander Castellanos submitted two fraudulent Assignment of Benefits contracts and an emergency tarp request in an attempt to defraud Citizens of more than $34,000 to perform mold remediation. As a result of Jennifer Perez conspiring with David Alexander Jr. Caballero, to use her homeowner's policy as a means for this fraud and consequently having Alexander Castellanos perform alleged remediation for non-existing damages, Citizens would have been defrauded of more than $136,000.

Jennifer Perez was arrested on May 25, 2023, David Alexander Jr. Caballero and Alexander Castellanos was arrested on August 3, 2023. They were all booked into Miami-Dade Jail and charged with multiple counts including Insurance Fraud, Grand Theft, Organized Fraud, and Uttering a Fraudulent Instrument. If convicted on all charges, they face between 5 and 10 years in prison respectively. This case is being prosecuted by the Miami Dade State Attorney's Office. 

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About CFO Jimmy Patronis  
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).

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