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Texas, California Men Plead Guilty In Florida To $1.35 Million In Fake Concerts With Justin Bieber

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Concert Venue (File)

Two men pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, as well as aggravated identity theft, in connection with a bogus music concert fraud scheme featuring top music artists.

Terronce Morris, 41, of Missouri City, Texas, pleaded guilty on February 13 to conspiring with Blake Kelly, 36, of Los Angeles, California, in a fraud scheme involving bogus music concerts featuring famous artists such as Justin Bieber, Post Malone, and Billie Eilish.

Kelly had previously pleaded guilty to the same conspiracy on Jan. 9.

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Morris and Kelly also pleaded guilty to aggravated identity theft for forging the signature and using the identity of music artist Justin Bieber on false and fraudulent concert contracts.

According to court documents, between December 2019 and March 2020, Morris and Kelly fraudulently obtained approximately $1,350,000 from victim J.R. Morris and Kelly persuaded the victim to give them the money for the purported production of a music festival featuring Justin Bieber, Post Malone and Billie Eilish, and other music recording artists.

Morris and Kelly created several false and fraudulent concert performance contracts, forging the signatures of the music recording artists. Morris also created false and fraudulent email accounts that he used to pose as if the music recording artists themselves had sent the signed contracts to Kelly and himself.

Additionally, during a video call with the victim, Morris and Kelly had an accomplice pose as Justin Bieber to trick the victim into believing that Bieber had agreed to perform at the concert series.

Relying on Morris’s and Kelly’s false and fraudulent statements, the victim sent three wire transfers to Morris.

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The victim also mailed Morris a $200,000 check made payable to Bieber, which Morris then deposited into his own personal account.

Morris and Kelly used the fraudulently obtained money to enrich themselves and finance a lavish lifestyle for themselves and their accomplices, which included traveling, purchasing luxury goods, paying for luxurious services, and dining at high-priced restaurants.

Morris’s sentencing is scheduled for May 2, at 1:30 p.m. Kelly’s sentencing is scheduled for March 28, at 1:00 p.m. Morris and Kelly face up to 20 years in prison for the conspiracy charge, as well an additional two years in prison for the identity theft charge.

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