A British man is under investigation by police after being suspected of committing fraud in connection with many projects in the music industry occurring over the course of this year and the last several years. He is known to have contacted and victimized people in the United Kingdom and the United States, and he has specifically targeted prominent orchestrators, music preparers, and other professionals working in musical theatre and film music. The projects that this man has infiltrated include well-known theatrical productions as well as films currently showing in cinemas.
He often communicates by e-mail, and generally poses as either a young music preparer soliciting work on a project or as an established professional offering such opportunities to others. He has also posed as a theatrical producer or music director seeking material for future productions.
His typical actions have been: promising payment for work without following through on sending payment; distributing work files he has received, without the permission or knowledge of their owner(s); accepting payment and credit for work he represents as his own, but is instead the rightful work product of other persons.
This man is known to operate using multiple aliases, sometimes impersonating actual professionals in the music industry. He is fluent with music terminology and appears to have at least a rudimentary knowledge of music software such as Sibelius, Finale, and Logic Pro.
Sometimes he has both solicited and offered work to different parties on the same project, using different aliases, with his victims not even becoming aware of each other or of the scheme until well after the conclusion of the project.
Many more specific details are known, but police authorities have requested that they be withheld from publication at this time, as several investigations are currently well underway.
Meanwhile, anyone working in these fields is urged, as one would with any project, to exercise all due caution and diligence before entering into any agreement, sending any work files or money, or offering work to anyone who seeks to make a professional acquaintance in this manner.
If you think you have been victimized by this man, you should report it to Detective Constable Mark Johnson of Gloucestershire Constabulary at [email protected]. Persons are also urged to report activity simultaneously to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting center.