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FARMINGTON - The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission's Insurance Division will host a meeting Tuesday in Farmington to take public comments and answer questions regarding its investigation of New Mexico Title Co.

The meeting will be from 7-9 p.m. at the Farmington Civic Center's Exhibit Hall 1, 200 W. Arrington St.

"For several months, the division has been examining the company to determine why it suddenly closed down and stopped serving customers earlier this year, and whether those actions violated state laws," the Insurance Division said in a prepared statement.

State Superintendent of Insurance John Franchini said the division is closely cooperating with Farmington police and other appropriate agencies to ensure that all problems, victims and potential violations are identified and routed to the appropriate agency for action.

The division encourages the public to attend the meeting for an update and to provide comments and request assistance. The meeting will be the first public forum in the nearly 3-month-old case.

New Mexico Title Co. closed abruptly Jan. 30, leading to a series of investigations by the PRC's Insurance Division, the state Financial Institutions Division and the Farmington Police Department.

The PRC is responsible for investigating New Mexico Title Co. and its title insurance business, while the FID is looking into missing money at New Mexico Title Escrow Co., another business at the same location, 650 W. Main St., Suite C.

Farmington police continue to investigate, said Cpl. Russ Bradford.


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"We get one search warrant, we get some information, so we need to do another search warrant," he said. "It takes time."

It can take banks two weeks to gather the information requested by a search warrant, he said.

Bradford said he could not publicly identify a suspect at this time. "Whoever it is, they're going to be pretty serious allegations," he said.

On April 9, a Santa Fe judge appointed a receiver for New Mexico Title Escrow. The receiver, Albuquerque attorney Darryl Millet, has said a thorough forensic audit will be conducted.

Customers will be notified of the status of their accounts by mail.

Customers have complained that they did not received expected disbursements, or that payments to escrow accounts were not properly credited.

Police have said millions of dollars appear to be missing.

The investigation involves unraveling a maze of parent companies and ownership interests. Named defendants in the Santa Fe case are New Mexico Title Co., Golden Rule Ltd., J.J. Bond Investments, Bobby and Carrie Willis, Cassidy Willis, Chad Cox, Kyle Finch and Jennifer Olson.