CONSPIRATORS SENTENCED TO 84 MONTHS AND 55 MONTHS FOR FRAUD CONSPIRACY IN THE “BIRTH OF INNOCENCE” MOVIE PROJECT
The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated today that this week the two men convicted of conspiring to commit fraud in connection with the “Birth of Innocence” movie project were sentenced by Chief United States District Court Judge Christina Reiss, in Rutland. On August 19, Louis J. Soteriou, 56 of Middlebury, Connecticut, was sentenced to prison for 84 months. On August 21, Malcolm (“Mac”) Parker, 56 of Addison, Vermont, who cooperated with the criminal investigation, was sentenced to prison for 55 months. Both men were allowed to self-report to prison on a date set by the Court.
In papers filed with the Court the United States explained that for the decade ending in 2009, Parker raised more than $28 million from hundreds of people by leading them to believe they were investing in Parker’s production of a movie entitled “Birth of Innocence.” Less than $1 million of that money was spent toward the creation of a movie, which remains unfinished. In contrast, approximately $4 million was sent to Soteriou who spent large sums of money on various luxuries, including more than $100,000 on hotel stays in Telluride, Colorado. Parker supplied Soteriou with this money despite telling investors it would be used toward the movie production. In Court the government estimated that Parker received approximately one-fourth the amount of criminal proceeds received by Soteriou.
The federal criminal investigation was conducted by agents from the Internal Revenue Service, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation. United States Attorney Tristram Coffin also recognized the significant work that was done to discover and stop this fraud in late 2009 by the State of Vermont Department of Financial Regulation (then known as the Department of Banking, Insurance, Securities, and Health Care Administration).
Soteriou was represented by Stephen Barth, Esq. Parker was reprsented by John Pacht, Esq.