Con artist who tried to scam Fyre Festival founder owes lawyers $250K for botched real estate deals

Woman known as Anna Delvey racked up some fees in her attempt to rent 281 Park Ave South

281 Park Avenue South and Anna Sorokin (Credit: Google Maps and Getty Images)
281 Park Avenue South and Anna Sorokin (Credit: Google Maps and Getty Images)

A socialite grifter who posed as a German heiress was able to scam banks, other con artists and white-shoe law firms out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Anna Sorokin, who goes by Anna Delvey, has more than $250,000 in unpaid legal fees she allegedly owes Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLC, Perkins Coie LLC and Lowenstein Sandler LLC on various real estate deals. According to court documents, she accrued $160,000 in fees at Perkins Coie in her effort to lease space at Aby Rosen’s 281 Park Avenue South, where she planned to open an arts club.

The deal fell through after Sorokin allegedly sent her real estate agent a questionable screenshot showing a $20 million bank balance. Assistant Manhattan District Attorney Catherine McCaw said the account was closed for months actually had a negative $2,000 balance. Sorokin also tried twice in 2015 to rent a two-bedroom, full-floor apartment at the Neil Denari-designed HL 23 building but could never pay up.

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While she isn’t charged, prosecutors asked a judge to allow the legal bills to be entered into evidence, the New York Post reported. But Judge Diane Kiesel barred the testimony from the trial after Sorokin’s lawyer, Todd Spodek, argued that the legal bills were too prejudicial.

Sorokin also failed to pay Gibson Dunn $65,000 after a partner represented her in a failed $22 million bank loan application. And she racked up another $30,000 at Lowenstein Sandler. She reportedly even tried to scam Fyre Festival organizer Billy McFarland, who conned festival goers himself.

Sorokin is facing charges of grand larceny, attempted grand larceny and theft of services. She has pleaded not guilty. Jury selection began Wednesday afternoon in Manhattan Supreme Court. [NYP] — Meenal Vamburkar