Actor Arrested After Running Multi-Million Dollar Ponzi Scheme

Claire Gibson

On April 7th, the federal authorities arrested television actor Zach Avery who was accused by the SEC (Securities Exchange Commission) of running a Ponzi scheme that defrauded hundreds of investors out of over $200 million. Horwitz tricked these investors by sending fake emails that made it seem like Horwitz and his company was going through the process of gaining film distribution rights.

Zach Avery is known for his work in the movies The White Crow (2018), and Farming (2018)

Zachary Joseph Horwitz, 34, also known as Zach Avery, has been taken into custody by authorities on a wire fraud charge. The maximum penalty for this charge is 20 years. Prosecutors believe the scheme began in 2015. According to the SEC, Horwitz tricked investors into believing that his company, 1inMM productions, could acquire film distribution rights from companies such as HBO and Netflix. Horwitz even described himself as an investor with a wealth of knowledge, reputation, and experience.

Horwitz used the funds he scammed out of investors to pay off his earlier investments and purchase a home worth $5.7 million. He transferred large amounts of money to his account. Horwitz targeted 5 investors who recruited 200 other small investors and led them to believe that they would make a good profit off investing in Horwitz.

Prosecutors say Horwitz provided investors with fake license and distribution agreements with Netflix and HBO that contained forged or fictional signatures.

The judge set Horwitz’s bond to $1 million. His next court date has been set for May 13th.