Preacher/insurance agent faces fraud charges

Published: Feb. 3, 2010 at 2:35 AM CST|Updated: Feb. 3, 2010 at 8:53 AM CST
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John Shane Vaughn (Source: East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office)
John Shane Vaughn (Source: East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office)
Source: Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office
Source: Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office
Source: Louisiana State Police
Source: Louisiana State Police

By Keitha Nelson - bio | email

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A south Louisiana preacher was slapped with $100,000 in fines on top of a slew of criminal charges. John Vaughn, who also acted as an insurance agent, recently had his license yanked after allegedly stealing thousands of dollars.

Police describe Vaughn as a chameleon, changing his look and name repeatedly. The 37-year-old is accused of stealing a 2-year-old's identity to defraud a life insurance company. He is accused of swiping $20,000 from an annuity he sold to a person that didn't even exist.

It took months for Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon's office to pin Vaughn down and issue him cease and desist orders. Donelon said Vaughn has two licenses under separate aliases.

"We have shut down his operation," Donelon said. "It does anger you when folks take advantage of a profession and the trust that comes with it."

He stated there are 100,000 insurance license holders in the state of Louisiana and about once a week, someone gets theirs revoked. Donelon explained the victims are often unsuspecting customers who find themselves uninsured in a time of great need.

Vaughn is also charged with bank fraud, issuing worthless checks and felony theft. Currently, he is being held in the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on a $25,000 bond. He was booked on similar charges in other parts of the state, including Livingston and Jefferson parishes.

Investigators reported the state of Tennessee also has their eyes set on the now former insurance agent. Donelon added Vaughn has 30 days to contest the cease and desist orders issued against him and that hefty fine.

The Louisiana Department of Insurance wants customers who believe their insurance agent is involved in any type of illegal activity to call 1-800-259-5300.

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