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State Accuses Five North Hollywood Residents of Defaulting on Car Loans, Filing Bogus Insurance Claims

The arrests were part of "Operation High End," a four-year investigation into an an organized fraud ring targeting Southland auto dealers handling high-end vehicles.

Minas Gevorgyan. Photo courtesy the California Department of Insurance.
Minas Gevorgyan. Photo courtesy the California Department of Insurance.

Thirteen people were arrested today in the Los Angeles area -- including five North Hollywood residents -- for their alleged participation in a million-dollar scheme involving auto loan fraud and insurance fraud, authorities said.

The arrests were part of "Operation High End," a four-year investigation into an an organized fraud ring targeting Southland auto dealers handling high-end vehicles such as those made by Mercedes-Benz and BMW, according to the state's Department of Insurance.

"Insurance fraud is a multi-billion-dollar drain on California's economy that results in higher insurance premiums for California businesses and consumers," Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said.

"This organized fraud ring filled their pockets by ripping off insurance companies and auto dealers," Jones said."These individuals conspired to purchase and lease vehicles with the sole intent to default on the loans and make bogus insurance claims."

Warrants were issued for the arrests of 17 people in Los Angeles and one person in Fresno. The five North Hollywood residents are:

  • Minas Gevorgyan
  • Peter Yerkanyan
  • Vardan Grigoryan 
  • Gayane Sargsyan
  • Harutyun Gevorgyan

The suspects allegedly bought or leased high-end vehicles, "many of which were acquired fraudulently by various individuals who lied about their employment or income on credit applications to qualify for loans of leases," a CDI statement said.

"The suspects then defaulted on the loans and leases, while at the same time filing false insurance claims on the defaulted vehicles," the CDI statement said.

Eighteen dealerships were defrauded in the scheme, which involved more than 20 new luxury vehicles and five used vehicles, including those made by Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, and Lexus.

Authorities did not identify the car dealers, citing an ongoing investigation.

Eleven insurers were affected, ncluding Geico, Farmers, State Farm, Nationwide and Allstate. The case will be prosecuted by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office.

--City News Service

Patch Editor Penny Arévalo contributed to this report.

Alex White May 24, 2014 at 11:58 AM
Aw shucks, folks...just slap'm on the hand....they're misunderstood...victims. Come on...have some compassion for your fellow man. I say we give 'em "Deukmejian Amnesty," a Radio Shack Credit Card Reader, throw in a couple of No-Ho Hydroponic Shops, cough up a few warehouses off the cuff of course...no paper trail, add in a dozen Smoke Shop/Water Filtration-- CASH ONLY-- businesses, and call it a day. Move along folks, nothing to see here!
Adam May 24, 2014 at 03:44 PM
Armenians involved in insurance fraud?!? I am shocked! SHOCKED!
Bandelier Pilferage May 24, 2014 at 07:15 PM
Why shocked? You helped to let these miscreant criminals into this country. YAN signifies Russian Armenian. Don't use a 'broad Brush Stroke' to paint all Armenians. Most who migrated to USA came in 1915 from Turkish Armenian to escape the GENOCIDE fueled by the Rotchilds, big banking, capitalism acquiescence to profit and big-oil opportunities in Baku in Asia Minor and the vile underbelly philosophic ideas of the "Young Turks' you were in the main Khazaria ethnic JEWS . ADAMS, that's a good SLAVER last name. Our you from a slave owing family, ADAMS? That's your implication, smart-ass. Old-school HYES migrated, legally to the USA in 1915 and our solid citizens and exponents of capitalism in the truest meaning. They spell their sir-name ending in IAN, meaning son of. Take your brains out of your ASS. Your logic is squeyed.
Lightnapper May 25, 2014 at 11:26 AM
There's almost nothing more humorous than when sarcasm is completely misunderstood; it appears someone's apparently had one too many 40-Ouncers, is in dire need of some of anxiety-reducing MMJ, and may just be a candidate for Xanax; and, it also appears he may be a closet Ganix, or at the least in need of a John, or is that Jon, or perhaps just Ian?

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