JOHN RITENOUR & HEATH RITENOUR OF INSURANCE OFFICE OF AMERICA FACING ALLEGED CIVIL RACKETEERING “RICO”, FRAUD, STOCK MANIPULATION AND “PONZI SCHEME” CHARGES. CLAIMS SEEK A TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER: WITNESSES SOUGHT FOR THESE ALLEGATIONS
December 8, 2020 LONGWOOD, FLORIDA. Insurance Office of America, Inc., John Ritenour and Heath Ritenour have filed a Motion for Temporary Restraining Order (“Motion”) seeking to prohibit parties suing them from publishing Notice to Witnesses. In the Motion, IOA argues that Video and Print Notice to Witnesses contain “defamatory” information in the form of quotations from filed Complaints and other filed documents, as well as, descriptions of the lawsuits and the identity of the parties therein. The parties defending the Motion are seeking witnesses as to the allegations made against Insurance Office of America, John Ritenour and Heath Ritenour to assist in the defense of this Motion.
The Amended Complaint goes on to state: “Defendants John and Heath’s real secret is that they know by stealing accounts, skimming off commissions and shaking down IOA agents with no one to challenge them, Defendant IOA’s stock price can be manipulated for their personal gain and those of their cronies who have enabled them for years. Indeed, Defendants John and Heath’s wealth, power and influence have made them all but untouchable in the eyes of the hard-working IOA agents and employees who dare not use their voice in fear of immediate – certain – and dire consequences.”
These allegations include, by example, in an Amended Complaint filed in Broward County Circuit Court, Plaintiff alleges: “Defendants Valli, John and Heath (wife, husband and son) are founders/corporate officers of Defendant IOA – one of the largest privately-owned insurance companies in the United States. These Defendants tout themselves as having created a “family-oriented” insurance company that “partners” with their sales force to provide the best working environment and largest commissions in the insurance industry. Defendants Valli, John and Heath are the proverbial wolves in sheep’s clothing as they built an empire through the commission of multiple fraudulent schemes, causing direct injury to Plaintiff and others similarly situated, including (a) skimming insurance commissions from IOA’s sales agents through “cooking the books”; (b) buying “books of business” and refusing to pay commissions on accounts and laundering their illegal gains through scores of separate corporate vehicles and real estate transactions; (c) the manipulation of Defendant IOA’s stock by making the company look healthier by claiming large accounts as belonging to IOA through bullying, deceit, terminations, intimidation and “mobster-like” behavior; and (d) attempting to intimidate a witness. When anyone complains or is deemed a threat, Defendant Heath, as IOA’s newest CEO, is known as the termination enforcer who “gets rid of” otherwise loyal employees and agents – no matter how long they have been with the company. At IOA – nothing will be tolerated other than 100% loyalty to Defendant John and his son Heath.”
The Amended Complaint goes on to state: “Defendants John and Heath’s real secret is that they know by stealing accounts, skimming off commissions and shaking down IOA agents with no one to challenge them, Defendant IOA’s stock price can be manipulated for their personal gain and those of their cronies who have enabled them for years. Indeed, Defendants John and Heath’s wealth, power and influence have made them all but untouchable in the eyes of the hard-working IOA agents and employees who dare not use their voice in fear of immediate – certain – and dire consequences. In fact, recently, upon information and belief, Defendant IOA’s Corporate Board has become permanent – cementing support and secrecy for Defendants John and IOA’s newest “emperor” – Heath’s schemes and lawlessness.”
The allegations further state: “as to some large accounts procured by a sales agent, Defendant John, Valli and/or Heath step in and “steal” the account by claiming that Defendant John, Heath or another designated IOA agent is the “producer” or “co-producer” or “lead producer” of the account without even discussing the same with the sales associate. In fact, in some instances, Defendant John is so brazen that he tells the agent that’s “just how this one goes”. At the end of the day, this large account may become a “status” account whereby IOA “REBATES” its insurance rates in exchange for IOA being able to use a company logo or have its name posted at a sports stadium.”
The above quoted allegations are directly from filed documents. As of the time of the issuance of this Notice to Witnesses, the allegations and issues have yet to be determined by a court of law. If you have any information regarding the above allegations, or as to the reputations of Insurance Office of American, John Ritenour or Heath Ritenour, please contact us at email@example.com. All communications will are confidential.