David Rodriguez Lopez, 46
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A man has been convicted in a Jacksonville insurance fraud scheme case that involved more than 30 people, some of which have prosecutions pending.
David Rodriguez Lopez, 46, was convicted by a jury Friday for schemes to defraud over $50,000, false insurance claims over $100,000 and knowingly participating in an intentional motor vehicle crash.
According to a State Attorney's Office press release, the investigation revealed that Lopez was the behind-the-scenes owner of Indian Rehabilitation Center, Inc. The licensed massage therapy clinic operated at 3636 University Boulevard in Jacksonville from March 2012 through October 2012.
Lopez's alleged henchmen recruited individuals to stage the accidents and then get treatment at the clinic. The release said the clinic would provide bogus treatment to staged accident participants for non-existent injuries. The clinic billed insurance companies in excess of $228,000.00.
On March 14, 2012, Lopez and four others were involved in a staged accident in Duval County. Lopez later filed a Personal Injury Protection claim through IRCI.
The clinic billed insurance companies in excess of $228,000 and the clinic received $35,000 for treatment provided to Lopez and the other vehicle occupants.
The release detailed that Lopez also arranged for a straw owner of the clinic, directed how to operate the clinic fraudulently, controlled IRCI's bank accounts and directed others as to which insurance companies to target.
In October 2012, the State Attorney's Office and Florida's Division of Insurance Fraud shut down the clinic and obtained an arrest warrant for Lopez. Investigators found Lopez hiding at a remote fish farm outside of Tampa after searching for him for almost six months.
Lopez faces 45 years in prison and is scheduled to be sentenced November 22.
First Coast News