Vermont storyteller and filmmaker Mac
Parker has accepted a plea deal for what prosecutors say was a Ponzi scheme
disguised as a movie project.
Prosecutors say Parker and his
partner, Louis Soteriou of Connecticut, collected $28 million over a nine-year
period for a movie they were making called "The Birth of Innocence."
Prosecutors say only about $700,000 went toward making the film. The rest went
toward funding Soteriou's "spiritual journey" and paying back earlier
When state authorities first began
investigating the movie two years ago, Parker and his supporters claimed they
were being persecuted by overzealous regulators.
Now Parker has agreed to plead guilty
to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and tax crimes. As part of the deal, he has
agreed to testify against Soteriou, who has been indicted on fraud, conspiracy
and money laundering charges.
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