by Steven Ertelt
August 15, 2006
Bismarck, ND (LifeNews.com) — A man who sold bogus medical malpractice insurance to a North Dakota abortion business, and others, has pleaded guilty to charges of fraud and money laundering. The bogus insurance sales prompted concerns about abortion centers putting women at risk by not being able to cover legal claims after botched abortions.
William A. Ledee III, who is 63, agreed to turn over $10 million in cash and property, U.S. Attorney David Nahmias told the Associated Press.
Ledee could spend as much as seven and a half years in prison and also pleaded guilty to selling insurance after he had previously been convicted of a felony for dishonesty.
According to an AP report, Ledee spent the money received on insurance premiums on fancy homes and an office building, luxury cars and other expensive items.
Nahmias said Ledee’s company, Professional Liability Insurance Co., advertised medical malpractice coverage but had no loss revenues other assets to pay out claims.
PLIC sold insurance to the Red River Women’s Clinic, the only abortion business in North Dakota.
North Dakota Insurance Commissioner Jim Poolman told the abortion facility to release its medical malpractice insurance records to the state after it was found that the facility had contracted with the bogus company.
Red River wouldn’t comply with the request and Poolman obtained a subpoena for the records.
PLIC was told to quit doing business in the state of Washington because it is considered an insurance scam selling false insurance policies. Other states, including Florida, Alabama, Illinois Mississippi, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Texas have prohibited PLIC form operating there.
Pro-life leaders expressed their concerns after the president of an abortion business network admitted that the fraudulent malpractice insurer was widely used among abortion facilities nationwide.
"The entire abortion industry is based on fraud and deception, and it’s the clients — women — who get taken," Wendy Wright, Senior Policy Director for Concerned Women of America told LifeNews.com at the time.
"The latest revelation that abortion clinics gain other’s confidence by using a bogus malpractice insurance company says more about the abortionists than the fly-by-night scam artists," Wright said. "The bogus company takes money, but abortionists take babies’
lives, wound women’s bodies and souls, and charge for the service."
Her comments came after Jane Bovard, president of the National Coalition of Abortion Providers and owner of Red River, told state officials that Professional Liability Insurance Company, also known as Unimed, has issued malpractice insurance policies with many abortion businesses.
Vicky Conroy of Legal Action for Women told LifeNews.com that abortion practitioners rate on the high end of malpractice risk indexes, which leads to high premiums.
Others may list a different specialty, such as dermatology, to obtain less expensive premiums, low-cost insurers, as Unimed advertises itself.
Conroy said the use of fraudulent malpractice insurance adds insult to injury for women who obtain abortions, as it adds another complication to the difficult task of collecting on malpractice suits against abortion practitioners.
In her experience of representing women hurt by abortion, the abortion practitioner’s assets are in other names or in offshore accounts, making it impossible to collect, even after winning the lawsuit.