Loading...
Hollywood

Britney Spears, Jennifer Hudson, Nick Nolte Invoked For Movie Investment Scam, Feds Allege

Comments (0)

By

Thu, Mar 10, 2011 at 4:13 PM

click to enlarge Britney was used.
  • Britney was used.
In a town where handshakes and words often suffice for written contracts, it's easy to see how an alleged scam like this could go down.

Two L.A. area men were arrested today on suspicion of running a "boiler room" operation that raised $300,000 for films that weren't produced, featuring stars that weren't "attached."

Britney Spears, Harry Connick Jr., Jennifer Hudson and Nick Nolte were said to be committed to one of the movies, to called There for Hope.

Except they had nothing to do with it, feds say.

Bart Douglas Slanaker, 42, of Panorama City, and Joseph Roth, 57, of Santa

Monica, were arrested on suspicion of federal mail fraud.

A "boiler room" office in North Hills was apparently used to cold call potential investors, according to federal documents filed in the case. (An office on West Sixth Street in Koreatown was also searched).

Feds say the duo were at it for the last seven months and used the money they raised as personal spending cash.

The FBI was also looking at the duo in connection with other movie investment scams.

The pair could see 20 years each if convicted.

Allegedly duped investors were told that filming on There for Hope would start this May and that Robert Duvall was joining the cast in place of a role that would have been played by Martin Sheen, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office federal criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in L.A.

After investigators contacted the actors' reps, none could confirm the attachments to teh film, according to the complaint.

Undercover agents posed as investors. One was told by a salesman that "within two years, you should easily, easily, just through distribution revenue, triple your money."

That salesman told the agent he was a co-producer on The Last Samurai with Tom Cruise.

Yeah, right.

If there's a lesson in all this, it's always check IMDB before writing five figure checks to (allegedly) sleazy producers you know nothing about.

Related Content

Now Trending

  • L.A.'s 10 Greatest Cultural Landmarks You've Probably Never Heard of

    David Kipen, the founder of Libros Schmibros and all-around cultural maven, once said, "Los Angeles is like your brain. You only ever use 20 percent of it." It turns out that the part about our brain is a myth; the part about L.A. feels eerily true. For every famously iconic landmark such as the...
    3
  • UCLA Flooded by Tons of Water (PHOTOS)

    Tons of water flooded the UCLA campus in Westwood after a gusher of a water main break sent tons of H20 down the hill from the Sunset Boulevard. The break at 10630 Sunset Boulevard was reported at 3:24 p.m., according to Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department. Sunset...
    2
  • I Choose to Live in My Car in L.A.

    By The Office Hobo It was our first trip together. My lovely travel partner, Ashley, and I had been asleep in the back of my pickup truck, surrounded by the bowl of muted, molten mesas above Lake Powell, Arizona. I rose quietly from the mattress, careful not to wake Ashley...
    8
Los Angeles Concert Tickets

Slideshows

  • Comic-Con's "Celebrity" Autograph Area
    A sometimes overlooked (but still incredibly unique) aspect of San Diego Comic-Con are the celebs available to sign autographs, as well as the autograph seekers themselves. If you've ever wanted to meet the Soup Nazi from Seinfeld or the guy who played Michelangelo in the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, chances are, as you wander the Autograph Area, you'll be able to connect with someone you didn't even realize you were waiting your whole life to meet! All photos by Rob Inderrieden.
  • Real Madrid Soccer Practice at UCLA
    Fans came out to greet world champion soccer team Real Madrid as they practice at UCLA. This is the first time that soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo has practiced with the team this year. All photos by Jeff Cowan.
  • Here's What Happens When President Obama Comes to L.A.
    President Obama came to town again to rake in some funds and clog some traffic. The only view of his visit you probably saw were the brake lights of the car ahead of you in the traffic jam he caused, but here's what was really going on. All photos by Ted Soqui.