U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
Southern District of Florida
99 N.E. 4 Street
Miami, Florida 33132
For Immediate Release
April 28, 2009
R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney
Public Adjuster, Claims Processor and Four Others Sentenced on Residential Arson Scheme
R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Hugo Barrera, Special Agent in Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Robert Parker, Director, Miami-Dade Police Department, announced that defendants Iraida Alvarez, Adiaris Figuerola, Alexis Perez, Erlin “Osmany” Perez, Carlos Stewart and Rosa Stewart were sentenced today by U.S. District Court Judge James L. King for their participation in an insurance fraud scheme. The defendants had previously pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349.
Today, defendant Rosa Stewart was sentenced to 60 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release; defendant Carlos Stewart was sentenced to 60 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release; defendant Alexis Perez was sentenced to 51 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release; defendant Iraida Alvarez was sentenced to 36 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release; defendant Adiaris Figuerola was sentenced to 27 months in prison, to be followed by two years of supervised release; and defendant Erlin “Osmany” Perez was sentenced to 27 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release.
According to documents previously filed with the court, the defendants participated in a conspiracy to set fire to a home in a residential neighborhood in Sunrise, FL, in order to collect on an insurance claim on a $400,000 policy with State Farm Insurance Company. During the course of the conspiracy, the defendants claimed they had experience burning down homes and met on several occasions to discuss plans to follow through with their scheme.
Pursuant to the scheme, the homeowners were to retain defendant Rosa Stewart, a public adjuster, and her son, defendant Carlos Stewart, a claims processor, who were employed at Florida Claims Experts, Inc., in Miami, FL. Rosa Stewart indicated that the fire would be started in one of the home’s bedrooms using an iron. On the day of the planned fire, Carlos Stewart arrived at the home with rubber gloves and an iron but was arrested on scene before any fire was started.
Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Miami-Dade Police Department Economic Crimes Bureau, Arson Squad. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Joseph B. Shumofsky.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.