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Portland woman pleads guilty to filing more than $135,000 in fraudulent insurance claims

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Posted at 3:59 PM, Oct 12, 2021

PORTLAND, Mich. — A Portland woman has pleaded guilty to filing fraudulent insurance claims totaling more than $135,000.

Christel Lanz was arraigned in 54-A District Court after an investigation was conducted by the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services Fraud Investigation Unit.

Lanz was charged with 27 counts of uttering and publishing falsified documents, four counts of false pretenses and four counts of falsified tax-related forms.

The fraudulent health claims were submitted between Mach 2015 and May 2018 for medical treatments for injuries that never occurred. according to the Department of Insurance and Financial Services.

The insurer referred the case to the state in June of 2020 after an internal investigation.

On Sept. 7 Lanz pleaded guilty to one count of filing false pretenses ($1,000 to $20,000), one count of filing false pretenses ($20,000 to $50,000), two counts of filing false pretenses ($50,000 to $100,000) and one count of falsifying tax documents in 30th Circuit Court.

The remaining charges against Lanz were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

Her sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 3 at 10 a.m.

The fraud investigation unit "was established to combat insurance fraud like that committed by Ms. Lanz, and I’m proud of the work our team does every day to protect residents of this state,” said Department of Insurance and Financial Services Director Anita Fox.

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