SACRAMENTO (AP) — The FBI is joining efforts to prevent fraud related to Northern California wildfire recovery efforts.

Nearly two dozen blazes ripped through the region in mid-October, destroying 8,800 structures and 245,000 acres of land. The FBI announced Wednesday it’s created a task force with state and local agencies to investigate potential fraud in the relief efforts.

State Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones is set to release an updated total of residential and commercial insurance claims Tuesday.

As of late October, property damage claims exceeded $3.3 billion.

The FBI’s San Francisco Division says the task force will utilize intelligence about fraud in other recent disasters, including hurricanes in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico earlier this year.

The Northern California wildfires were the deadliest in state history, killing 44 people.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.


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