A prisoner serving time in Georgia allegedly stole $11 million from a billionaire. Arthur Lee Cofield Jr., 31, stole millions by impersonating Sidney Kimmel, 94, a movie executive who owns Sidney Kimmel Entertainment. The company has produced box office hits such as “Hell or High Water,” “Crazy Rich Asians” and “Moneyball.”
Kimmel initially built his wealth by selling his apparel line, Jones New York, for $2.2 billion.
Cofield, who is serving time for armed robbery, allegedly used contraband cell phones while prison to conduct the scams against Kimmel, according to Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
While using cell phones in prison, Cofield was able to trick customer service reps at Charles Swab, a financial service that managed Kimmel’s money. He convinced the reps to wire money to a company in Idaho and bought 6,000 American Eagle one-once gold coins. Cofield then used funds to rent a private plane to bring them to Atlanta.
He was able to use a portion of the coins to buy a $4.4 million home in the lavish Buckhead community in Atlanta.
Federal agents initially caught on to Cofield’s schemes in 2020 and claims that he used similar tactics to fraud other billionaires.
Cofield has been charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud and money laundering. Eldridge Bennett, 65, and his daughter, Eliayah Bennett, 27, were charged for allegedly helping with the scheme.
It’s believed to be one of the biggest schemes conducted by a U.S. prisoner.
Cofield could also face charges of attempted murder after authorities claim he ordered gang members to shoot and kill a romantic rival of his in Atlanta.