People had no idea about the issues they would face when investing their hard-earned money into actor Zach Avery’s production company. However, it did not take long for things to turn fishy, and unfortunately, investors were too late to realize they were the victims of a Ponzi scheme run by Zach. ABC’s ‘The Con: The Hollywood Mogul Con’ chronicles the complete incident and shows how Zach Avery was finally brought to justice by the law. Let’s delve into the details surrounding the case and find out where Zach is at present, shall we?
How Much Money Did Zach Avery Defraud?
A native of Berkely, California, Zach Avery, aka Zachary Horowitz, graduated from Indiana University with a degree in psychology but later decided to switch to an acting career. Hence, after several auditions, he made his debut in the 2009 movie ‘G.E.D.’ The actor soon bagged the chance to star in several other productions, including ‘Fury,’ ‘Hell Is Where The Home Is,’ ‘The White Crow,’ and ‘Last Moment of Clarity.’ Besides, in 2013, he also decided to dabble his foot in movie production and ended up co-establishing his own company, 1inMM Productions, alongside Julio and Diego Hallivis.
Interestingly, the production company turned out to be the thorn in Zach’s side since the Ponzi scheme he has been convicted of originated from 1inMM Productions. According to reports, Zach ran the scheme from 2014 to 2019, during which he convinced numerous investors to invest in his production company. Since people were initially unwilling to invest in a newly established company, he hit upon a plan. According to the show, he sent potential investors a list of films that his company was reportedly distributing on other continents.
Additionally, he even forged documents and emails from Netflix and HBO, claiming that such networks would license the films he distributed. Interestingly, the show details that Zach promised as much as a 40% profit on any investment and sent bottles of expensive liquor to make his targets change their minds. Unfortunately, the forged emails, fake documents, and fraudulent promises gave investors a false sense of security and made them pump millions of their hard-earned dollars into Zach’s production company.
Official reports state that he scammed people for over $227 million, while the scheme itself was valued at a staggering $690 million. Interestingly, some of the money was used to repay former investors, while Zach used the rest to fund his lavish lifestyle. In fact, he went about building an extra luxurious life for himself and even bought a $6.5 million house in Beverlywood, Los Angeles.
Unsurprisingly, Zach’s scheme began falling apart when investors realized their profits were due. Although the actor managed to stall people by producing forged emails from Netflix and HBO explaining the delay, the investors soon smelled something fishy and got the law involved. Thus, after a meticulous investigation, Zach was finally arrested on April 5, 2021, and charged with several counts of wire fraud.
Where Is Zach Avery Today?
After Zach’s arrest, authorities combed through his house for any information or evidence that could help convict the actor of fraud. Although Zach initially submitted a bail of $1 million and walked free, he was made to return to the court to face justice. Once put on trial, Zach reportedly realized the amount of incriminating evidence against him and decided to plead guilty to a single count of securities fraud.
As a result, he was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison in 2022. Besides, on top of his imprisonment, Zach was also ordered to pay a $230 million restitution fee. Thus, with the actor still not eligible for parole, he remains behind bars at the Terminal Island Federal Correctional Institution in Los Angeles, California.
Read More: Where Are Zach Avery’s Wife and Kids Now?