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Press Release

Dayton businessman convicted of fraud at trial sentenced to 3 years in prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Ohio

DAYTON, Ohio – A Dayton businessman was sentenced in U.S. District Court today to 36 months in prison for crimes related to a fraudulent insurance claim.


Following a trial in January 2022, the jury found Brian Higgins, 50, guilty of three counts of mail fraud and two counts of tampering with a witness with intent to retaliate.


According to court documents and trial testimony, in 2014 and 2015, Higgins filed a fraudulent insurance claim in connection with water damage to the Meeker Residence, an 8,000 square-foot house in Dayton. Higgins received more than $100,000 in insurance claims that he used for his personal benefit rather than to repair water damage that occurred from a 600-gallon fish tank.


Higgins used money disbursed on the claim to pay for personal expenditures, such as funding a new restaurant space, paying telephone bills, spending money at a casino, and other personal expenses, rather than paying for bona fide repairs and restoration of the home.


The defendant submitted invoices and repair cost estimates from a construction vendor to the insurance company in order to obtain money. The vendor documents were false and misrepresented the status of repair work at the Meeker Residence.


Higgins then diverted the money to himself and paid for travel, hotels and dining out, among other personal expenses. Higgins had the company keep a small amount of the money to complete small, cosmetic repairs in an attempt to cover up his scheme.


Kenneth L. Parker, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, and J. William Rivers, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Cincinnati Division, announced the sentence imposed by Senior U.S. District Judge Thomas M. Rose. Deputy Criminal Chief Brent G. Tabacchi and Assistant United States Attorney Rob Painter are representing the United States in this case.


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Updated May 27, 2022

Financial Fraud