Tangipahoa insurance producer issued C&D for taking over $200,000 in
company funds, Commissioner Wooley announces
Released: May 24, 2005
Department of Insurance Fraud Unit investigators accompanied by the Tangipahoa Sheriffs
Office today served Laura Elizabeth Watkins (42) with a cease & desist order
and summary suspension of her license for taking thousands of dollars in company
funds from her employer, insurance producer Henry Powell, Jr.
Watkins is accused of taking at least $255,000 from the company operating account
without the permission of her employer between 1999 and 2004. There is no evidence
that any insurance premium payments were involved and no policyholders were harmed
by Watkins' actions. Todays c&d follows her initial arrest by the Ponchatoula
Police Department in December 2004 and her subsequent guilty plea in April 2005
to 50 counts of felony theft. As a special condition of her probation, Watkins was
required to pay restitution to the victim, Henry Powell, Jr.
Department of Insurance records show that Watkins held a life, health and accident
insurance license from June 1999 until todays action. Her last address on
file with the Department of Insurance is 19242 Country Club Lane, Hammond; however
she is believed to be residing at 14108 Kohnke Hill Road, Hammond, where she was
Wooley urges consumers who feel uneasy about any insurance-related transaction to
call the Department of Insurance Fraud Unit at 225-342-4956. If callers dont
want their names used, they can request that their involvement be kept confidential.