Two women have been arrested after they posed as booking agents for an event that involved Bruno Mars and Justin Timberlake. Nancy Jean and Carissa Scott, under the name Canvas Media Group, intentionally conspired to defraud investors in events including a benefit concert for the Sandy Hook Promise Foundation.
Both women were arrested on Wednesday at JFK International Airport. The pair were contacted by an investor organizing the benefit concert for the Sandy Hook Foundation, and they responded by claiming Timberlake would perform for $500,000. One such investor placed a $100,000 deposit, but when Timberlake failed to mention the event, they requested a confirmation as to whether he would actually perform.
The women, or an accomplice, contacted the investor and claimed they were Timberlake's manager. When Canvas Media Group claimed that he would now cost somewhere between $800,000 to $1 million, Bruno Mars was offered as an alternative for $600,000.
"As alleged, the defendants viewed a fundraiser for a charity formed to protect children from gun violence as an opportunity to commit fraud and line their own pockets," said New York attorney Richard P. Donoghue. "Simple stealing is bad enough, but this is worse." Within a month of receiving the deposit, they had allegedly spent half of the money for "personal expenses."
The Canvas Media Group website, which is still active, says they promise to offer "media resources for small business owners at affordable prices." Additionally, the site includes a vague story about how the fake company started, referencing an unnamed "small business" in NYC that was ultimately sold. "After many years of studying the media industry, my knowledge in building a brand and a business made me realize it did not always require a huge investment," it reads.
In the portfolio section of the site, a number of music festivals, which are likely not real, are listed including "November Fest 2019" and "Cincy's R&B Fest." The 51-year-old Jean and 41-year-old Scott are expected to appear in court on Thursday.