Grifter who sought deal with Aby Rosen at 281 PAS convicted on fraud charges

Anna Sorokin could spend up to 15 years in prison
April 26, 2019 09:00AM

Anna Sorokin, Aby Rosen and 281 Park Avenue South (Credit: Getty Images and Wikipedia Commons)

Anna Sorokin, Aby Rosen and 281 Park Avenue South (Credit: Getty Images and Wikipedia Commons)

The socialite grifter who climbed New York’s party scene and nearly landed a real estate loan on a $40 million nightclub space at Aby Rosen’s 281 Park Avenue South was convicted on multiple fraud charges on Thursday.

Anna Sorokin, who went by the nom de plume Anna Delvey, could serve up to 15 years in prison after a Manhattan jury convicted her on most of the larceny and fraud charges she was facing, the New York Times reported.

Sorokin, 28 and originally from Russia, posed as a German heiress with a trust fund totaling 60 million euros. She rubbed shoulders with high society and took moneyed Manhattanites, hotels, restaurants, banks and friends out of $275,000, prosecutors said.

Though Sorokin was convicted on most larceny charges, a jury acquitted her of trying to fraudulently obtain a $22 million bank loan from Fortress Investment Group to open an arts-and-nightclub space in the vein of Soho House at Aby Rosen’s six-story, landmarked 281 Park Avenue South. Sorokin befriended the son of architect Santiago Calatrava, who was to design the private club for the “Anna Delvey Foundation,” with a total price tag of $40 million.

Sorokin negotiated a lease deal with Rosen’s RFR Holding — and told friends she had secured the space — while her lawyer Andrew Lance at Gibson Dunn tried to cobble together funds from hedge funds and banks, prosecutors said.

One bank, City National, turned down her request after being unable to determine the origin of her wealth, but still offered a $100,000 credit line. Prosecutors said Sorokin forged financial documents and created fake financial advisors to dupe prospective lenders. She used the $100,000 from City National to convince Fortress to give her a $25 million loan, but after the investment fund decided to send a managing director to Switzerland to check up on her claims, she ditched the application. (The banker who initially handled her application at Fortress sent Sorokin over 150 text messages, many of them flirty.)

In pursuit of the loan for 281 Park Avenue South, Sorokin also racked up $250,000 in unpaid legal fees from Gibson Dunn, as well as Perkins Coie and Lowenstein Sandler.

Swedish photography center Fotografiska ultimately inked a deal to take all 45,000 square feet at 281 Park Avenue South. [NYT] — James Kleimann