A pair of Texas insurance salesmen, who last week misrepresented their real motives to at least three Ardmore senior citizens, have been issued an immediate cease and desist order by Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Kim Holland.


A pair of Texas insurance salesmen, who last week misrepresented their real motives to at least three Ardmore senior citizens, have been issued an immediate cease and desist order by Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Kim Holland.


“Seniors are one of the most valued and vulnerable segments of our population,” Holland said Tuesday. “I will do everything in my power to see that individuals and organizations who abuse the trust of seniors are held accountable.”


The order was filed Friday against William Anthony Osborne, owner of American Senior Estate Services in Plano, Texas, and Jason Wright, an employee of Osborne.


The order was based on a finding the men’s conduct was “an immediate danger to the public or is causing or can be reasonably expected to cause significant, imminent and irreparable public injury.” The business is not licensed in Oklahoma.


American SEnior was also ordered to leave all records “undisturbed” until insurance commission fraud investigators can examine them.


Disobeying the cease and desist order could cost the men $25,000 in fines “for each act of violation” and directs them to make complete restitution to any victims.


The cease and desist order was based on evidence gained by an investigation that began Feb. 17 when the commission learned two Ardmore senior citizens had been contacted by the company’s telemarketing campaign. The telemarketers claimed the firm was hired by an attorney to review the local residents’ trusts. Under unrelenting pressure to make appointments the Ardmore senior citizens agreed to allow a representative to come to their homes. But both remained leery and contacted their Ardmore attorney Mike Hisey.


Hisey advised his clients to contact local police and The Ardmoreite. Hisey later told The Ardmoreite he believed the Texas firm was “trolling for business” using public record information found at the county clerk’s office. Subsequent interviews with the targeted seniors and an Internet search revealed the firm’s real purpose was to sell annuities.


The Ardmoreite also contacted local insurance agent Bob Bramlett to discuss the fraudulent methods the duo was using. Bramlett notified the insurance commission. Within minutes of Bramlett’s call, OIC general counsel Michael Ridgeway phoned The Ardmoreite promising an immediate investigation.


The Ardmoreite published the story about the investigation in the Feb. 18 edition. The story resulted in a third potential victim contacting the OIC to report she had also been pressured into making an appointment with Wright.


And the Plano company’s problems don’t end with the Oklahoma cease and desist order.

According to the OIC investigation, the Texas Department of Insurance Commission began disciplinary action against Osborne and five others in December. The action is based on complaints from at least 20 Texas residents. The case alleges fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, dishonest acts or practices, unfair and deceptive trade practices and unsuitable annuities.


Area residents with questions or who may have been duped into buying annuities from the company should call the OIC at (800) 522-0071 and ask for the anti fraud unit.


Marsha Miller 221-6529
marsha.miller@ardmoreite.com