Wednesday, 24 Feb 2021

Anna Sorokin: Fake German heiress released early from US prison

A con artist who posed as a German heiress has been released from prison on good behaviour.

Anna Sorokin went by the name Anna Delvey as she defrauded banks and people in Manhattan celebrity circles into thinking she had a fortune of about $67m (£51.5m) to cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays.

The 30-year-old Russian-German posed for nearly a year as a Manhattan socialite and her scheme became known as the “summer of scam” in 2018 articles published in Vanity Fair and New York magazine.

Ultimately Sorokin was found guilty of eight charges including grand larceny and acquitted of two others in April 2019 and was sentenced to serve four to 12 years.

Her release comes months after she reportedly apologised at a parole hearing in October last year.

“I just want to say that I’m really ashamed and I’m really sorry for what I did,” Sorokin said, according to the hearing’s transcript.

“I completely understand that a lot of people suffered when I thought I was not doing anything wrong.”

Prosecutors said she used forged financial documents to maintain the charade and even managed to get a $100,000 overdraft loan from one bank.

Her lawyer, Todd Spodek, argued in court that Sorokin had tried to “fake it until she could make it” and had been “easily seduced by glamour and glitz” of life in New York.

Headlines about her trial often focused on her fashion choices after she employed a courtroom stylist and one day refused to appear in front of the judge because of her outfit.

It is thought Sorokin could now face deportation.

On her release she instantly created a new Twitter profile with the bio “I’m back” and mocked the department of justice’s conviction of her, saying “Good Job!”.

Then she started asking for a job and money again in tweets that have now been deleted.

In one she wrote: “Someone from Fortress Investment Group – I need $720m by the end of next week. DM me.”

On her Instagram account of 753,000 followers, she posted a picture with the caption: “Prison is so exhausting, you wouldn’t know.”

Sorokin’s story is now being turned into a Netflix series, called “Inventing Anna” produced by Shonda Rhimes, behind hit TV shows Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal.

It is reported that Sorokin had used most of the $320,000 fee she was paid for the show to pay restitution to banks and other fines.

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