A Hollywood actor identified as Zachary Horwitz has been arrested in connection with an alleged multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme.
Horwitz was arrested by FBI on Tuesday April 6 for allegedly masterminding a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors of hundreds of millions of dollars. News of the actor’s arrest was announced by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The FBI and SEC allege that Horwitz ran a Ponzi scheme through his company, 1inMM, which defrauded investors of $227 million.
Horwitz allegedly told investors that his company invested in film rights, subsequently reselling these rights to distributors like Netflix and HBO. He is said to have sold people on his scheme by showing them fake licensing and distribution agreements, featuring forged signatures. Ultimately, however, both of the above companies confirmed to the FBI that they’d never conducted business with 1nMM.
The SEC said;
“We’ve obtained an asset freeze and other emergency relief in an emergency enforcement action against Los Angeles-based actor Zachary Horwitz and his company, 1inMM (one in a million) Capital, LLC in connection with an alleged Ponzi scheme that raised over $690 million.”
Horowitz and 1inMM were charged with violating the antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws in the complaint, which “also seeks a permanent injunction, disgorgement, prejudgment interest and civil penalties against Horwitz and 1inMM.”
It is believed that Horwitz began receiving funds as part of the Ponzi scheme in 2015, using them to purchase a $6 million home in the Beverlywood neighborhood of Los Angeles, while repaying earlier investors.
Horwitz’s credits as an actor include low-budget features such as Trespassers and The Devil Below. His assets are currently frozen, with the charges against him carrying a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail.
A hearing will take place April 19 “to determine if the asset freeze should remain in force for the duration of the litigation.”