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70 year old Francis Okyere, a previously licensed insurance agent in Westlake Village California, was sentenced after pleading no contest to 17 felony counts of identity theft and grand theft by false pretenses.

Okyere was sentenced to two years in county jail and to pay restitution in full.

The Department began an investigation after receiving a complaint from one of Okyere’s ex-relatives that he had stolen the identities of several people in order to open a new insurance agency. The Department’s investigation confirmed that Okyere stole the identities of four victims, in order to open Cyber Access Insurance Agency. The victims’ identities were also used on small business loan applications to fund the fraudulent agency.

The Department’s investigation discovered Okyere had also applied for a series of Small Business Administration and Paycheck Protection Program loans, the federal program to help businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. The documents related to those loans revealed two of the same stolen victims’ identities had been used to fraudulently secure loan funds in the amount of $38,963. Okyere used the same stolen identities when he applied for forgiveness of one of the loans. Okyere was arrested August 18, 2022.

Okyere’s alleged accomplice, Holly Freeman, 40, was also arrested and charged with four counts of felony identity theft for her alleged involvement in the same scheme.

This is the second time accusations have been brought against Okyere, who has previously been convicted of grand theft following another Department of Insurance investigation which found he stole $65,456 in insurance premiums from small business owners.

The charges in the earlier case arose from an investigation by the Department of Insurance’s Investigation Division, Valencia Regional Office, into multiple complaints filed by clients of Okyere alleging that their insurance policies were canceled despite paying Okyere for the coverage.

The investigation revealed that, between July 2015 and September 2016, Okyere misappropriated at least $65,456 in insurance premiums payments from four small business owners and used those funds for his personal benefit.

Okyere’s actions left the business owners uninsured against potential liability and workers compensation claims.

The Department ordered Okyere to surrender his license in 2019.

The second case was prosecuted by the Healthcare Fraud Division of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.