FAKE heiress Anna Delvey has been paid a whopping £230,000 by Netflix to turn her elaborate cons into a new series, according to reports.
The Russian born scammer, real name Anna Vadimovna Sorokin, will be played by Emmy-winning Ozark star Julia Garner.
Sorokin fleeced friends out of tens of thousands of pounds, failed to pay expensive hotel bills and even tried to trick a bank into giving her a £16million loan.
Backed by telly powerhouse Shonda Rhimes, the woman responsible for bringing Bridgerton to Netflix, Inventing Anna is due to be released later in the year.
The Mirror reports Sorokin was paid nearly a quarter of a million pounds for the project.
When the BBC asked Sorokin, 30, if crime had paid, she is said to have replied: “In a way, it did.”
However, the large sum hasn't been splashed on outrageous luxuries, rather it was used to pay back Sorokin's victims and the banks.
She was released from prison in February after serving just 20 months, and seems to be revelling in her notoriety.
On her Instagram account, which has 128,000 followers, she has posted news articles about herself, as well as a video showing her eating caviar and drinking champagne with a friend and a picture of a clothing bag from high-end retailer Net-a-Porter.
Sorokin is also set to release her jail diaries as a book titled Life Is Hard in which she complains about a lack of organic vegetables behind bars.
She was born to working-class parents just outside Moscow in 1991 before growing up in Germany.
Charged with grand larceny in October 2017, her infamy as the “fake heiress” has gained global attention, spawning a hugely successful podcast.
She first appeared on the circuit in 2013, aged 22, when she flew to New York to cover fashion week for Parisian art and culture magazine Purple.
Using the magazine’s network, she became a regular fixture at exclusive parties, before returning to Europe every few months while her visa was renewed.
During one such visit in 2014 she met DJ Elle Dee, at a party in the Hamptons.
“A mutual acquaintance told me that Anna needed friends because she’d just moved to New York,” Elle exclusively told Fabulous last year. “After our first brief meeting, she used to magically pop up by my side whenever there was an event or photographer nearby.
“She was condescending towards everyone and acted as if she was superior. She made sure she didn’t go unnoticed.
"I think she knew that the more she was seen in nightlife pictures with certain people, the more accepted she would become on the Manhattan social scene.”
Soon Anna started appearing at every art gallery opening and event launch, and was always out for dinner, partying and drinking in the cocktail bars favoured by Manhattan’s in-crowd. She’d often talk about the huge fortune she was set to inherit and spoke passionately about her plans to start an exclusive art centre, which she hoped to call the Anna Delvey Foundation.
Her Instagram account backed up her claims with regular posts from exotic locations, ranging from the Côte d’Azur to Miami Beach, as well as designer clothes and handbags.
“Anna’s social media postings and her carefully posed and planned photographs were all there to establish her story as a wealthy heiress,” explained psychologist Maria Konnikova, author of The Confidence Game.
“Anna was, in a sense, pretending to be social royalty. Her deft use of social media made that possible because we tend to see social media as legitimate and con artists are very, very good at exploiting that.”
In February 2016, when she returned to New York once more, Anna targeted Rachel, who was working as a picture editor at Vanity Fair magazine.
“I first met Anna when I was out with friends in Manhattan,” Rachel recalled.
“She seemed to single me out upon arrival. I wasn’t sure why, but I was flattered by her interest. She seemed bright, eccentric and funny, and that night she picked up the bill for a bottle of vodka.”
“Since we both lived alone, she would often ask if I had dinner plans and if not, invite me to join her. I saw her two or three times a week for a couple of months.
"Those evenings were filled with laughter and white wine, and Anna would pick up the bill, occasionally mentioning her trust fund. While we were out, she would often say to business people: ‘You should meet my friend Rachel. She works at Vanity Fair.’
"I didn’t think about it at the time, but she was using me. The fact that I worked at a high-profile magazine lent her a degree of credibility by association.”
“Anna had already established herself on Instagram, but now she needed someone to legitimise the heiress persona she’d created,” explains Maria.
“And Rachel, with her connections to the media, provided that.”
Then in May 2017, when Anna needed to leave the US to renew her visa again, she suggested to Rachel that rather than going back to Europe she would pay for them both to stay at the five-star luxury retreat La Mamounia in Morocco, claiming to have already reserved a £5,800 per night room complete with private pool and butler.
However, on the morning they were set to leave, Anna asked Rachel to book the flights because she was busy in meetings and texted her screen shots of a debit card, which was refused.
Anna then claimed that this was because La Mamounia had pre-authorised charges on her account and she needed to raise her daily spending limit.
“That’s when I offered to put the flights on my credit card,” Rachel said.
“She promised to pay me back the following week, and I had no reason to doubt her.”
Two days into the trip, on May 15, Anna generously offered to buy Rachel a handmade kaftan, but when she tried to pay for it, her debit card was declined again.
In the end, Rachel spent £1,000 on kaftans, which included one for Anna.
“I thought her purchase had been flagged for potential fraud since she hadn’t alerted her bank she’d be travelling,” explained Rachel. “I was starting to worry about how much I was spending, but I trusted Anna.”
However, the list of things Rachel had to pay for – including expensive dinners – grew, reaching a head when the hotel told them that the credit card Anna had given them wasn’t functioning and the cost of the stay needed to be covered.
Rachel was forced to put the entire bill on her personal American Express credit card. The total: £50,000.
“I was annoyed by Anna’s chaotic nature, but that was just what she was like,” said Rachel. “She promised to wire me £60,000 to cover everything, this included a little extra money for the inconvenience. But when we got back to New York the only communication I had with her was via text.
"Months later, and there was still no money. I started to panic that she had no intention of paying me back. I was late on my monthly credit card payments and even had to ask a friend for a £1,500 loan to avoid a bounced rent cheque.”
And so, two and a half months after returning from Morocco, Rachel finally confronted Anna in August 2017.
“She blamed her bankers, lawyers and family for her inability to access the money in her trust,” said Rachel.
“That confrontation was the final tipping point. Seeing the way she deflected each question gave me the sense that she’d been involved in similar confrontations before. She didn’t apologise and couldn’t explain any of it.
"The police were unable to help because the alleged fraud happened abroad, but the next day I contacted the New York County District Attorney’s office, as they deal specifically with fraud cases, and they confirmed that Anna was the subject of an ongoing criminal investigation. I couldn’t believe I’d fallen for her lies.”
Unbeknownst to Rachel, she wasn’t the only one who’d been conned. The fake heiress was leaving a trail of financial chaos across the city.
That June, Anna had stayed at the Beekman, a hotel in Lower Manhattan, for three weeks without paying her £9,000 tab, and she owed £380 to the swanky W New York for a two-night stay in July.
Later that month, there was also an embarrassing episode at the Le Parker Meridien hotel restaurant, where she had run out without paying
the £150 bill when her credit cards were declined. The police were called and Anna was arrested before being released without bail restrictions.
According to court documents, Anna had also forged bank statements showing £45million in assets to try to get a bank loan of £16million for her foundation.
Her attempt to get the loan ultimately failed, however she did get a temporary £78,000 overdraft with City National Bank, based on forged proof of foreign assets. She splashed all of this money on her lavish lifestyle, spending thousands on personal training sessions with a celebrity trainer, as well as flash dinners and shopping sprees at Apple and Net-a-Porter.
However ,Anna’s fake world began to unravel in September 2017, when she failed to appear in court to face her misdemeanor charges.
A warrant was issued for her arrest and the NYPD tracked her down to a luxury rehab centre in Malibu, where she was hiding from the police. She was arrested on October 3 and returned to Manhattan to face trial.
For the first time, the true extent of Anna’s deception became clear and she was accused of four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny and one count of attempted grand larceny.
Her debts totalled approximately £215,000 – much of it made up of the legal fees that she was left liable for by applying for her multi-million-pound bank loan for the Anna Delvey Foundation.
After pleading not guilty, Anna appeared in New York State Supreme Court on March 27, 2019 for her month-long trial. Her defence lawyer Todd Spodek had brought in a personal stylist to dress her in a number of designer outfits – including Victoria Beckham, Michael Kors and Chloé – in an attempt to give the jury the impression that she, like many before her, simply dreamed of taking a sizeable bite out of the Big Apple.
Rachel testified on April 17, identifying Anna in front of a judge and jury as the woman who had duped her out of thousands of pounds.
“Describing such a personal ordeal that still felt incredibly raw was extremely difficult,” recalled Rachel, “The assistant district attorney asked me whether I saw the person who had committed the crime against me anywhere in the room. I pointed at Anna. She was smirking and I thought she might have been trying to unnerve me. After that, I just ignored her.”
On April 25, Anna was found guilty of four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny and one count of attempted grand larceny, but was acquitted of conning Rachel out of £50,000.
“When I heard the verdict, I was distraught,” said Rachel. “Anna spun me in cruel circles with her lies and her betrayal nearly broke my spirit.”
Anna was sentenced to at least four years in prison with a maximum sentence of 12 years (the actual amount of time will depend on factors such as her behaviour), and ordered to pay almost £155,000 in restitution, as well as £19,000 in court fines. As the judge read aloud her sentencing, Anna raised her hand to her lips and cried.
During an interview the day before, she had said: “I’m not sorry. I regret the way I went about certain things. My motive was never money. I was power hungry.”
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