Former travel insurance employee gets 47-month federal sentence for fraud

A McCordsville man has been sentenced to nearly four years in federal prison after using multiple—and often elaborate—fraud schemes to steal more than $750,000 from his employer.

Wesley A. Smith, a former claims processor for Carmel-based travel insurance and benefits firm Seven Corners Inc., received a 47-month prison sentence for conspiracy to commit wire fraud, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Indiana announced Thursday.

In addition, Smith was ordered to pay $758,164.90 in restitution and serve two years on supervised release after his imprisonment.

Investigators say Smith, 31, devised multiple schemes from 2015 to 2018 to rip off his employer. The biggest involved filing fraudulent travel insurance claims that resulted in a loss to Seven Corners of more than $499,000.

Smith involved three of his friends to file false towing claims under the names of members of the Family Motor Coach Association, a client of Seven Corners. In his position, Smith would process and approve the claims, but would send the money to his co-conspirators, who were identified as officials of the towing companies named on the fraudulent invoices.

Investigators said Smith sent more than $394,000 to the co-conspirators, who sent more than $194,000 back to Smith via wire transfers. Smith also sent a total of $105,000 to himself on 38 separate occasions from December 2015 to April 2018.

Smith also used a company credit card for 235 fraudulent transactions to purchase airline and hotel purchases for himself, family, and friends, resulting in a loss to Seven Corners of more than $221,000.

The investigation also found Smith caused six medical service overpayments to be directed into his personal bank account, resulting in a loss of more than $37,000.

“Mr. Smith’s actions were fueled by nothing more than pure and simple greed, and this sentence demonstrates how such fraud ends—with time in federal prison,” said FBI Indianapolis Special Agent in Charge Paul Keenan in written comments. “The FBI will continue to aggressively pursue those who engage in these illegal business practices in an attempt to enrich themselves at the expense of their employer.”

Smith is the second former employee from Seven Corners to be indicted on fraud charges since the beginning of 2020. Lisa Ann Raines of Anderson, a former senior finance technician, was indicted Jan. 7, 2020, after being accused of a multi-year scheme that embezzled $2.1 million from the travel insurance company. Her case is still pending after being delayed last year.

IBJ previously reported that Seven Corners underwent a number of organizational and management changes from 2014 to 2017 after running into a slowdown in business.

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