A Mason family - Mitch, Patricia, and Candace Stevenson - was indicted by a federal grand jury in June for money laundering associated with the receipt of life insurance proceeds. Allegedly, Patricia and Candace were the beneficiaries of two policies totaling nearly $3 million on the life of Mitch’s sister, Tina.
The 2009 application for life insurance stated that Tina had never been diagnosed with diabetes nor had taken medication within the previous 12 months. A physical exam was performed on a woman in Texas weighing 170 pounds. Tina actually weighed 380 pounds when she was in an emergency room three weeks prior to the application. Tina died in early 2012. Patricia and Candace received the death benefits and used them to purchase a Bentley convertible, make a $280K down payment on a former Homearama house, and other purchases. Unrelated, or perhaps not, Mitch and his son, Steven, have also allegedly been involved in a scrap metal scan.
Whew. Several points.
1. In Ohio, life insurance policies become incontestable two years after the application even if there is fraud. Companies have to pay the death benefit.
2. The Stevensons are likely being charged with money laundering because they cannot be charged with insurance fraud.
3. Money laundering is the crime of hiding the source of proceeds from a crime. I am not sure that using funds from a life insurance policy to purchase lots of bling amounts to money laundering.
4. In the bizarre coincidence category, the house purchased by the Stevensons was the subject of bank fraud 10 years ago that caused the builder to spend time in prison.