Despite theater's common expression that "the show must go on", a large-scale musical planned to hit Broadway this month has been postponed following accusations of fraud and breach of contract levied against its stockbroker. For further definitions of fraud and "BoC", visit the Investors page of our firm's website.
Long Island-based broker Mark Hotton, 46, of West Islip, NY, is alleged to have deceived producers of Rebecca: The Musical via two counts of wire fraud - for which he faces up to 20 years in prison on each count - and the supposed fabrication of four fake investors in the show, who Hotton claimed were prepared to invest $4.5 million. The show's producers have since filed suit for a sum exceeding $100 million against Hotton and his wife and business partner, Sherri Hotton.
Hotton's story itself is said to be one of grandstanding theatrics in its own right. When producers attempted to secure funds from allegedly falsified investor "Paul Abrams", Hotton is said to have told them that the man had recently died on an African safari after contracting malaria. Hotton also created false e-mail accounts and United Kingdom based mailing addresses for his invented investors, even corresponding with Rebecca's producers under these false identities.
Rebecca's indefinite postponement has been credited to an allegedly fake $1.1 million loan which Hotton is said to have failed to produce. The show's budget is alleged to be within $12 million to $14 million, with $7 million already spent in production and vendor costs. The show's sets, props, and costumes have supposedly been produced in full, but now sit in storage, only furthering costs. It has been reported that if at least $12 million is not raised by year's end, investors' funds must be returned in full.
Hotton was allegedly paid over $60,000 by Rebecca's producers for what was to be his work finding investors and a loan. Hotton is also alleged to have used the same false investor names when paid $750,000 by a Connecticut real estate broker who sought his aid in securing a $20 million loan.
A third reported case of suspected fraud emerged from reports that Hotton attempted to coerce investors into fronting a total of $3.7 million to purchase the supposed accounts receivable of a Long Island electrical and cable television installation company owned by Mr. and Mrs. Hotton. An online corporate profile of Mr. Hotton additionally credits him as a manager of Nu Level, LLC, and CEO of Park Avenue Associates, LLC, based in Long Island City, Queens.
It is the right of any and all professionals and investors alike who believe they may have suffered losses as a result of fraud, breach of contract, or falsified investments to contact our offices to explore their legal rights and options. If you or a family member feels they have been the victim of such actions, contact the securities fraud lawyers at Malecki Law for a free consultation and case evaluation at (212) 943-1233.