Celeb Financial Guru Pleads Not Guilty in Fraud Case

Friday, Jun 11, 2010  |  Updated 1:12 PM EDT
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Celeb Financial Guru Pleads Not Guilty in Fraud Case

AP

Ken Starr

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A jailed financial adviser to the stars has pleaded not guilty to an alleged $59 million securities fraud.

Kenneth Starr is a onetime adviser to celebrities like Wesley Snipes, Sylvester Stallone and Martin Scorsese, though there's no indication they were victims.

He entered the plea on Friday before Judge Gabriel Gorenstein in federal court in Manhattan. Starr was presented by a public defender. His original attorney withdrew, perhaps because he has no money.

The 66-year Starr was arrested last month and ordered held without bail. Prosecutors alleged he cheated elderly victims out of $30 million. An indictment unsealed Thursday raised the total to $59 million.

Prosecutors say Starr stole money in a Ponzi-like scheme from January 2008 through April after gaining the trust of wealthy and influential clients.

He was arraigned today on 23 counts of fraud, including wire, money laundering, investor and secutories fraud. Starr is next due in court June 21. Judge Gorenstein is moving along the case to serve "the public interest" even though Starr cannot retain his own attorney.


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