Portland woman charged with insurance fraud

Posted at 6:08 PM, Jul 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-01 18:08:20-04

LANSING, Mich. — A Portland woman has been charged with insurance fraud, according to the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services.

Christel Lanz, 48, of Portland, was arraigned in Lansing District Court 54-A on June 21 on 27 counts of uttering and publishing falsified documents, as well as four counts of false pretenses and four counts of falsified tax-related forms.

Lanz is accused of submitting 27 fraudulent accident claims on behalf of herself and her family between March of 2015 through May 2018 for injuries that never occurred, according to a news release. She received more than $135,000 from Trustmark Insurance Company.

An investigation into the claims was initiated by Trustmark Insurance Company before the case was referred to the Department of Insurance and Financial Services Fraud Investigation Unit in June of 2020.

"The DIFS Fraud Investigation Unit is committed to combating insurance fraud because fraud increases cost for all Michiganders in the form of higher insurance premiums," Department of Insurance and Financial Services Director Anita Fox said in the release.

Lanz was released on a $20,000 personal recognizance bond.

There is a probable cause conference scheduled for Friday, July 2, and a preliminary examination scheduled for Friday, July 9 before Judge Stacia Buchanan.

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