A 35-year-old man named Anthony Farrer from downtown Los Angeles was charged with federal wire fraud in early November 2023. He faces a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison if convicted.
Timepiece Gentleman Faces 20 Years
According to the complaint, Farrer founded “Gentlemen Timepieces,” a consignment business for luxury watches, in Texas in 2017 before opening a location in Beverly Hills in 2022. As a consignment business, the focus was connecting purchasers and sellers of high-end watches. When consigned watches were sold, Farrer would receive about 5% in commission. However, from late 2022 until the summer of 2023, Farrer allegedly kept all the proceeds from consignment sales for himself.
Supposedly, Farrer operated a sort of Ponzi scheme by persuading victims to wire funds to him so that he could purchase agreed-upon luxury watches. Instead of sending them those watches or paying them back what he owed for selling their watch, Farrer would send them another victim's consigned watch without permission. He lulled his victims into a sense of security by conducting smaller transactions with them before asking them to engage in larger ones.
Law enforcement believes that, to date, Farrer's scheme caused victims to lose about $3 million collectively.
How a Competent and Competitive Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
For a defendant to be found guilty of federal wire fraud, the prosecution must show that (1) there was a scheme to use false pretenses to defraud victims, (2) the defendant knowingly and willfully participated in this scheme with the intention of defrauding the victims, and (3) to further the scheme, the defendants or victims had to use interstate wire communications. Interstate wire communications have been defined to include telephone calls from one state to another or between the US and a foreign country, as well as communications via the Internet or social media.
Attorney Vitaly Sigal of Sigal Law Group is a competent and competitive criminal defense attorney who understands wire fraud defenses inside and out. If you or someone you love is accused of wire fraud, Attorney Sigal can help. Call 818-325-0570 today or schedule a free consultation online.