Ex-media chiefs admit to buying NY, Cali real estate with stolen millions from lenders

A former Newsweek Media co-owner and an ex-CEO of Christian Media both pleaded guilty

New York /
Feb.February 14, 2020 06:49 PM
From left: Will Anderson and Etienne Uzac with California and New York skylines (Credit: LinkedIn)

From left: Will Anderson and Etienne Uzac with California and New York skylines (Credit: LinkedIn)

Two former news media top executives pleaded guilty to a scheme in which they fraudulently secured $35 million in loans then used the money to buy land in New York and California.

Etienne Uzac, who was co-owner of Newsweek Media Group and IBT Media; and William Anderson, the former CEO of Christian Media Corporation, admitted to money laundering and fraud charges, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. announced on Friday.

Authorities said the two men took out loans to buy pricey computer equipment, then through a web of corporate bank accounts — and with the help of their companies that were also charged — used most of the funds to buy up land.

The district attorney’s office declined to comment on the real estate involved in the case.

Uzac and Anderson were not immediately available for comment. They will be sentenced on April 20.

The three companies that were named along with the men: IBT Media, Christian Media Corp. and independent equipment vendor Oikos Networks, pleaded guilty this week to their parts in the scheme.

The DA’s investigation into the scheme became public in January 2018 when officials obtained a warrant to seize 18 servers from Newsweek Media Group’s New York City offices.

That October, Uzac tweeted a statement denying the allegations, claiming equipment lenders were repaid and accusing Vance of retribution for an article IBT published about the prosecutor’s handling of sexual assault allegations against disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein. Weinstein is now standing trial in Manhattan, on charges brought by Vance’s office.

Attorney Marc Agnifilo is representing Uzac and in a statement provided to Newsweek, he said while his client “exhibited poor judgment in how he secured certain loans, today’s disposition appropriately reflects that these loans were repaid. Mr. Uzac, who has never been in any legal trouble, looks forward to moving past this difficult chapter.”

Agnifilo did not respond to requests for comment.

Write to Erin Hudson at [email protected]


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
The lawsuit involves drugs, Trump, and 11 million dollars. (Getty, Facebook, Pexels)
Drug smuggler pardoned by Trump sued by All Year over high-interest loans
Drug smuggler pardoned by Trump sued by All Year over high-interest loans
Eric Malley was arrested earlier this week. (Getty)
Feds indict NY real estate exec in $50M fraud scheme
Feds indict NY real estate exec in $50M fraud scheme
Johnny Mansilla (Nest Seekers, Realtor, Zillow)
Nest Seekers falsely claims exclusivity on Miami listings, feeds bad information to Zillow and Realtor.com
Nest Seekers falsely claims exclusivity on Miami listings, feeds bad information to Zillow and Realtor.com
Alternative lenders saw the biggest gain in market share (iStock)
Return of the non-banks: Alternative lenders show signs of life
Return of the non-banks: Alternative lenders show signs of life
(Getty, iStock)
City Council targets deed fraud with two bills
City Council targets deed fraud with two bills
According to the report, purchase applications are down while refinancing is up (iStock)
Applications for mortgages to buy homes drop
Applications for mortgages to buy homes drop
Darren King (Credit: iStock)
Multifamily lender saw delinquent loans double in Q1
Multifamily lender saw delinquent loans double in Q1
Ira Zlotowiz, Founder & President of Eastern Union; Simon Ziff, president of Ackman-Ziff; Dustin Stolly, Vice Chairman, Co-Head of Capital Markets Debt and Structured Finance and Newmark Knight Frank
Tune in for the latest in commercial lending on tonight’s TRD Talks Live
Tune in for the latest in commercial lending on tonight’s TRD Talks Live
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...