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OKLAHOMA COMMISSIONER CHARGED WITH EMBEZZLEMENT.

Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Carroll Fisher has been indicted on felony charges that include embezzling more than $40,000 from the Insurance Department's Continuing Education Fund.

Fisher and his administrative assistant, Opal Ellis, are accused of depositing money paid into the fund into his personal bank account. They then transferred it to a separate, private bank account to which only they had access, Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson charged.

Other charges involve their alleged failure to keep proper records for the Fisher Foundation, a nonprofit he formed to provide shoes for poor children, and charges Ellis took money from a vending-machine owner for allowing him to place machines at the department.

Ellis pleaded not guilty; a judge entered a not-guilty plea for Fisher when he stood mute.

The commissioner, a Democrat first elected to the office in 1998 after a long career running his own insurance agency, has been seeking the U.S. Senate post being vacated by Sen. Don Nickles (R-OK).
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Publication:Liability & Insurance Week
Date:Feb 23, 2004
Words:161
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