Fox 11 Investigates: Sports Scam Targeting Pro Athletes - KMSP-TV

Fox 11 Investigates: Sports Scam Targeting Pro Athletes

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UPDATE to our FOX 11 Investigates report:  George French Jones was charged Friday in an eleven-count felony complaint Friday for fraud, grand theft and identity theft. In January, we broke the story that Jones was being sought for scamming NFL Hall of Famer Warren Moon out of $200,000.  According to our investigation, Jones solicited, and received, the money as payment for court-side seats to Miami Heat games and for a de facto down payment for a share of the team itself, neither of which Jones owned.

According to court documents obtained by FOX 11 News Friday, Jones has been charged in the Moon case. He is also charged with trying to defraud former New England Patriot Jarvis Green out of $50,000 and former Oakland Raider Charles Woodson out of $50,000. The complaint says that Jones' alleged scheme went beyond sports into the entertainment world; he is charged with defrauding actor Nick Cannon out of $15,000.

Jones was arrested at LAX on February 21 for violating the terms of his probation in another case. He is being held at the Mens Central Jail in LA and is due back in court on March 12. His arrest was part of a join investigation by the LAPD, LA County Probation Department and the FBI.

Investigators believe there are more victims and ask that anyone who believes they were victimized to call the FBI in Los Angeles.

More on the Story:

An organized theft ring in Los Angeles is targeting high profile professional athletes, offering to sell them a minority share in the Miami Heat basketball team that they don't own.

The NBA and the Miami Heat contacted the FBI about the scam after a man by the name of George French Jones sold NFL Hall of Famer Warren Moon four fictional floor seats to Heat games and told Moon's agent that he could become a 5% minority owner in the Heat basketball team .  Jones has also tried to get money out of a Super Bowl champion Patriot player, and an 8 time NFL Pro Bowler.

Moon's agent wired $200,00 for the tickets to an account at Academy bank in Pasadena but never got the tickets.  Moon's company, Sports 1 Marketing is now suing George French Jones to get his money back, but Jones has disappeared.   Investigators are trying to find out whether Jones is still contacting professional athletes,  trying to scam money.  The NBA and Miami Heat would not comment for this story. Several attempts to contact Warren Moon, Sports 1 Marketing, and Moon's agents went unanswered.  

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