Sunday June 26, 2022
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Attorney General Andy Beshear today announced that his office is working with Tennessee law enforcement to focus on the effective prosecution of vehicular homicide cases.

The annual training event, being held in Pigeon Forge June 13-15, brings together Kentucky commonwealth’s attorneys with prosecutors from the Tennessee District Attorney’s Office and crash reconstruction officers from both states.

“Unfortunately, the Commonwealth has experienced a 10 percent increase in annual highway fatalities from 2015 through 2016,” Beshear said. “My administration is focused on addressing the persistent challenges our families face, and one of those is better addressing Kentucky’s drug epidemic. Every time our families, our friends or our children get in a vehicle, they are at risk of being harmed by a driver under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.”

In 2016, 834 people were killed on Kentucky’s roadways.

A statistic that remains constant, Beshear said, is that one in five highway fatalities are in crashes that involved alcohol.

In Kentucky last year, there were more than 6,228 collisions involving alcohol and drugs, resulting in more than 2,900 injuries and 167 fatalities.

Advanced training in this area by prosecutors and crash reconstructionists will improve the ability of prosecutors to both recognize these events as well as to successfully prosecute them when warranted, Beshear said.

Attorney General’s Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor Robert Stokes will work in coordination with his Tennessee counterpart to present the training, which is open to the media. The training is at the Courtyard Marriott at 120 Community Drive in Pigeon Forge.

The goal of the training is to create a team building approach between crash reconstruction officers and state prosecutors, Stokes said.

The training is presented under the direction of the American Prosecutors Research Institute’s (APRI) National Traffic Law Center. Last year’s training was held at Lake Barkley State Park in Cadiz.

Attorney General Andy Beshear today announced nearly 350 Kentuckians and three state organizations have received a combined $18 million from the 2014 Bank of America Settlement involving the company’s mortgage loan practices during the 2008 national financial crisis.

The impact of the settlement for Kentuckians is based on the most recent compliance report by the 2014 Bank of America Mortgage Settlement Monitor released Nov. 30.

The Office of the Attorney General joined five other state attorneys general and the federal government to reach the settlement that has provided billions of dollars of relief to struggling homeowners nationwide, including funds to help defray tax liability as a result of mortgage modification, forbearance or forgiveness.

According to the compliance report, nearly 350 Kentucky homeowners have received relief from the company’s civil penalties:

  • 88 Kentuckians received debt forgiveness totaling $6.1 million.
  • 56 Kentuckians obtained loan modifications totaling $1.5 million.
  • Nearly 10 Kentuckians had their second-lien mortgages automatically extinguished.
  • 125 Kentuckians received forgiveness of their outstanding debt related to a junior lien or unsecured debt totaling $3.8 million.
  • 66 Kentuckians located in the hardest hit areas who lost a primary residence due to foreclosure or short sale or who were first time low income borrowers were given new loans that meet settlement guidelines.
  • Nearly 10 Kentuckians had their loan principal extinguished.

As part of the Bank of America Settlement, the Kentucky Bar Associations’ IOLTA Fund received $6 million; the Federation of Appalachian Housing Enterprises of Berea received $250,000; and Metro Louisville Habitat for Humanity received $99,000 to benefit Kentucky populations affected by the mortgage crisis.

The Kentucky Retirement Systems received $23 million in August 2014, from the settlement with Bank of America for defrauding the state’s pension system when the company sold high-risk loans, Beshear said.

agency-attorney-general1As Veterans Day approaches, Attorney General Andy Beshear is warning Kentuckians to be cautious of scams targeting veterans.

According to the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, there are nearly 330,000 veterans in Kentucky who could be the target of scams.

The scams include calls and emails offering bogus military discounts and soliciting personal military information. Scammers are pretending to be a deploying solider or claim to be a representative from a bogus military charity.

“We owe an incredible debt to those who have fought to defend our freedoms,” Beshear said. “As we prepare to honor those who have served our country on Veterans Day, I want to warn our veterans and military families to be cautious of scammers who do the inconceivable – attempt to defraud them and take advantage of their sacrifice and service.”

Beshear said AARP has issued a nationwide alert to help veterans identify the top scams targeting veterans and military families.

  • Veterans Affairs Impostor Scam – By phone or email, a scammer may claim he or she is from the Department of Veterans Affairs and ask to confirm or update personal military information.
  • Deployment Scam – Con artists may pretend to be a deploying service member who places an online classified ad looking to sell an expensive item right away at a steep discount. The scammer will ask for upfront payment with gift cards or wire transfer and never provide the item.
  • Benefits Buyout Scam – Scammers may target veterans in need of money and offer to pay them cash in exchange for their future disability or pension payments. The cash offered is usually only a small part of the value of the disability or pension benefit.
  • Military Discounted Rent Scam – Fake online real estate classified ads may target veterans by promising military discounted rent. The scammer then takes a veteran’s money through a wire transfer as a security deposit to the “landlord.”
  • Fake Military Charity Scams – Scammers often try to use what sounds like legitimate charities and reference armed forces, veterans or military families to try and swindle Kentuckians.

Beshear offered these tips to help veterans and Kentuckians identify scams.

  • Be suspicious when asked to pay with gift cards or by wire transfer. These payment methods are often used by scammers because they are difficult to track and nearly impossible to recover.
  • The Department of Veterans Affairs will never call to update personal financial information over the phone.
  • Donors who are not familiar with a charitable organization and how they use their money can verify what percentage of their income goes to the charity’s purpose on CharityNavigator.org. Additional research tools and resources can be found on the Attorney General’s website.
  • Veterans and their families should only work with VA-accredited representatives regarding their benefits. To find a VA-accredited representative, visit http://www.va.gov/ogc/apps/accreditation/index.asp.

To report a scam contact the Attorney General’s Office at 888-432-9257 and file a complaint online.

Kentuckians are urged to stay up to date on new and trending scams by signing up for Scam Alerts. To enroll text the words KYOAG Scam to GOV311 (468311), or enroll online at ag.ky.gov/scams and select text message or email alert.

In October, Beshear announced Kentucky service members and their families targeted by retailer USA Discounters will share nearly $1 million in restitution from a multistate settlement to resolve claims the company preyed on service members with deceptive trade practices.

Attorney General Andy Beshear and his Cyber Crimes Unit today announced a Jefferson County man has pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful transaction with a minor, a Class D felony.

Gregory Keith Brown, 59, of Louisville, agreed to a two-year sentence as part of his plea agreement entered this week in Jefferson Circuit Court.

Brown was arrested in 2015 by AG cyber investigators along with assistance from the Kentucky State Police.

According to cyber investigators, Brown sent electronic messages to an undercover officer posing as a 15-year-old girl for the purposes of engaging in illegal sexual acts. A search warrant executed at a residence in Louisville revealed Brown was actively seeking a sexual partner, preferably a minor.

Brown was charged with prohibited use of an electronic communication system to procure a minor in a sex offense.

The work of the Cyber Crimes Unit, a division of the Department of Criminal Investigations in the Office of the Attorney General, is part of Beshear’s core mission to keep sexual predators away from Kentucky’s families and children. Since Jan. 4, Beshear’s office has arrested or convicted 44 sexual predators.

“The Attorney General is the chief advocate and protector for our Kentucky families, and it’s our job to partner with law enforcement at every level to take those who would exploit children off the streets to ensure our communities are safe,” Beshear said. “I want to thank Mike O’Connell and his office along with the Kentucky State Police for working Attorney General Andy Beshear and his Cyber Crimes Unit today announced a Jefferson County man has pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful transaction with a minor, a Class D felony.

Gregory Keith Brown, 59, of Louisville, agreed to a two-year sentence as part of his plea agreement entered this week in Jefferson Circuit Court.

Brown was arrested in 2015 by AG cyber investigators along with assistance from the Kentucky State Police.

According to cyber investigators, Brown sent electronic messages to an undercover officer posing as a 15-year-old girl for the purposes of engaging in illegal sexual acts. A search warrant executed at a residence in Louisville revealed Brown was actively seeking a sexual partner, preferably a minor.

Brown was charged with prohibited use of an electronic communication system to procure a minor in a sex offense.

The work of the Cyber Crimes Unit, a division of the Department of Criminal Investigations in the Office of the Attorney General, is part of Beshear’s core mission to keep sexual predators away from Kentucky’s families and children. Since Jan. 4, Beshear’s office has arrested or convicted 44 sexual predators.

“The Attorney General is the chief advocate and protector for our Kentucky families, and it’s our job to partner with law enforcement at every level to take those who would exploit children off the streets to ensure our communities are safe,” Beshear said. “I want to thank Mike O’Connell and his office along with the Kentucky State Police for working with our investigators on this case.”

Brown will be ineligible for probation and will be under supervision five years after being released from prison. He is required to complete a sex offender treatment program and must register as a sex offender.

with our investigators on this case.”

Brown will be ineligible for probation and will be under supervision five years after being released from prison. He is required to complete a sex offender treatment program and must register as a sex offender.

As absentee votes are being cast and as voters prepare to head to the polls Tuesday, Nov. 8, Attorney General Andy Beshear is urging Kentuckians to report any voting abnormalities to his office’s Election Fraud Hotline.

Beshear asks all Kentuckians who witness election irregularities or possible election law violations to call the Election Fraud Hotline at 800-328-VOTE or 800-328-8683.

The hotline is open throughout the year during normal business hours and from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. (EST) on Election Day.

“Each voter has the right to cast his or her ballot free of interference and intimidation, and my office is here to protect that right,” Beshear said. “I encourage anyone with possible information about violations of federal voting rights laws to call the Election Fraud Hotline. Each and every report made will be promptly investigated to ensure a fair and honest election in Kentucky.”

By law, the Office of the Attorney General has jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute election law violations.

In addition to the hotline, investigators from the Attorney General’s Office may patrol precincts and polling places across the Commonwealth on Election Day in order to respond immediately to complaints.

“We are committed to enforcing clean and fair elections, and holding those who violate the law accountable,” Beshear said.

Beshear is also a member of the Kentucky Election Integrity Task Force, and has been working closely with the Secretary of State’s Office and the United States Attorney’s Offices in Eastern and Western Kentucky to protect voters and the integrity of the election.

Theagfraud Attorney General’s Office is required by statute to conduct postelection audits in six randomly drawn counties within 20 days of the election.

The Attorney General’s Office will send hotline updates to the media at 10:30 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. (EST), after the polls close Nov. 8.

Members of the news media covering the election are reminded that they may be in the voting room for the limited purpose of filming the voting process. However, as per OAG 88-76, the media may not conduct interviews with voters inside the voting room, record the identity of voters or disrupt the voting process. See KRS 117.236.

Attorney General Andy Beshear and House lawmakers today announced plans to strengthen a Kentucky insurance law and better protect Kentucky families across the Commonwealth.

The pre-filed agency-attorney-general1legislation, filed today by sponsors Rep. Chris Harris, of Forrest Hills, and Rep. Darryl Owens, of Louisville, defends the Kentucky Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits Act by enforcing an effective date and outlining action steps for insurers.

The consumer protection act was signed into law in 2012 intending to protect life insurance beneficiaries. The law requires insurance companies to check public death records for their Kentucky policyholders and make a “good-faith effort” to notify and compensate policy beneficiaries after their family member or loved one passes away.

The pre-filed bill, which will be presented to lawmakers when they convene in January, seeks to strengthen the retroactive application of the current law. It requires the Department of Insurance to set guidelines for insurance companies on what constitutes a “good-faith effort” regarding contacting beneficiaries for life insurance benefits.

“As the state’s chief consumer advocate, it’s my duty to protect Kentucky families,” Beshear said. “This legislation fights for the people. It’s critical that we have strong laws in Kentucky that require insurance companies to work with consumers and pay out policies. My office will continue to work with lawmakers to strengthen our consumer protection laws.”

Beshear joined Reps. Harris and Owens for the announcement of the pre-filed legislation today at Belfry High School. Many local senior citizens attended the event.

“We owe every resident of Kentucky the security to know when they buy an insurance policy that the policy will go where it belongs, to the beneficiaries,” Rep. Harris said. “Not years later, but within a reasonable time following the death of a policyholders. My bill will protect current Kentucky insurance policy holders and beneficiaries from some insurance companies that do what they can to keep from honoring the commitments that were made when the policy was sold.”

“Most of the small policies we are talking about were sold in lower socioeconomic regions of the state,” Rep. Owens said. “Many Eastern Kentuckians and folks living in urban neighborhoods in Lexington and Louisville bought these policies to help their children with burial expenses after they died. Kentuckians deserve strong government regulations and policies to protect them from harmful, unfair practices that pad the profits of big insurance companies at their expense.”

Reps. Harris, Owens and more than 15 House members supported identical legislation, House Bill 408, during the 2016 regular session. The measure passed the House of Representatives 84-0, but received no action in the Senate.

After the act was passed in 2012, it was challenged in court by several insurance companies who argued the law should not apply retroactively. The case was scheduled to be argued before the Supreme Court of Kentucky in February. The Kentucky Department of Insurance was set to argue in support of the law for policyholders; however, the agency dropped the case two days before it was to be argued.

With no one to advocate for the law, Beshear attempted to intervene on behalf of the state and consumers, but the cased had been dismissed.

Attorney General Jack Conway and his  Office of Consumer Protection today announced that the Daymar College settlement administrator will be mailing claims notice packets to all qualifying former students of Daymar College.  The administrator is mailing the first claims packets today.

“This settlement with Daymar will provide much-needed relief for former students and protection for students considering enrolling in Daymar in the future,” said Attorney General Conway. “I encourage all qualifying students to file a claim and participate in this long-awaited settlement.”

Under the terms of the consent decree announced by the Attorney General on September 10, $1.2 million will be distributed to former Daymar College students that submit claim forms and are qualified participants.  A “qualifying student” is a student that started a term of study at a Kentucky Daymar campus beginning July 27, 2006 through July 27, 2011 and completed at least one term of study at a Kentucky Daymar campus during this time period.  Any qualifying student wanting to participate in the distribution must provide the information requested on the claim form and return it to the administrator by first class mail postmarked no later than December 10, 2015.  Any qualifying student that does not provide a claim form by the deadline will not be entitled to participate in the distribution.  Click this link to read the general terms of the consent decree:http://migration.kentucky.gov/Newsroom/ag/daymarsettlement.htm.

The claims administrator will divide $1.2 million by the total number of school terms that qualified claimants completed during the qualifying period.  This dollar amount per completed term shall be distributed to each qualifying student who has submitted a claim.

In addition to providing $1.2 million in cash distributions, the consent decree requires Daymar to forgo collection of $11 million that qualifying students owe to Daymar College.  Students do not need to file a claim to be awarded this benefit, but they must file claims to receive a cash distribution.

If Daymar stopped collection on any student loans of more than $1,000 for any qualifying student, that student will not be eligible for a payment from the reimbursement fund.  If Daymar stopped collection on loans totaling less than $1,000, qualifying students are eligible for a distribution based on the number of terms completed at a Kentucky Daymar campus during the qualifying period.

For questions about the claim process, you may call the claims administrator at 1-844-814-8813 or visit the website www.DaymarCollegeSettlement.com for further information.

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