A New Orleans insurance agent has been arrested and warrants have been issued for two owners of a school bus company suspected of insurance fraud, the Louisiana State Police said Monday.
State Police said Michael Simon, 44, of New Orleans, was arrested in Jefferson Parish for nine counts of computer fraud for allegedly giving several charter schools falsified insurance documents. Warrants have been issued for Melvin Williams, 42, of Gonzales, and Jeramy Jackson, 40, of New Orleans, who face 23 counts of computer fraud each.
The developments stem from an investigation into Scholars First, which operated in East Baton Rouge, Orleans and Jefferson parishes, as well as the town of Ferriday, providing bus service for charter schools.
Fraud claims against New Orleans school bus company under state investigation
It began when a representative of Scholars First provided a fraudulent insurance card in a minor bus crash in Orleans Parish. The name on the insurance card was listed as Trenice Jupiter, a Scholars First employee at the time of the crash. Troopers said Jupiter was not a licensed insurance producer in Louisiana or anywhere else, so they issued her a cease-and-desist order on April 3, 2019.
News of the investigation resulted in a slew of area schools firing the company.
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Troopers said they have not located Williams and Jackson yet.