A 61-year-old businessman received essentially a life sentence this week when a federal judge sent him to prison for 60 years. The insurance fraud case allegedly cost investors $485 million and affected as many as 1,000 people.
A $1.4 million insurance scam led to 20 arrests by the Miami-Dade Police Department's Economic Crimes and Arson Division. A group used false renters, known as straw renters, and arson to file fraudulent insurance claims. The investigation, referred to as Operation Candlelight, focused on a series of fires, 12 in total, which occurred over a five year period. In each fire, the straw renter claimed to have accidentally left a candle burning next to an object that caught fire and spread to the rest of the property.
Earlier this week the U.S. Attorney's Office in Miami unsealed four separate indictments that accuse 27 people committing mortgage fraud against homeowners in South Florida.