Edison man admits he resold concert tickets, defrauded investors

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Photo of old Rent Party Tickets in the collection of Langston Hughes.

An Edison man admitted participating in a fraudulent scheme that involved soliciting investments from victims for a ticket resale business, when in fact he diverted their investments for his own personal use and benefit.

Jeffrey Burd, 61, of Edison, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton to an information charging him with one count of wire fraud, according to information provided by Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig on Jan. 28.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, from January 2014 to June 2018, Burd represented to his victims that he was involved in buying tickets to high-profile concerts, sporting events, and Broadway shows and then reselling those tickets for a profit.

Burd induced the victims to provide him with money that would purportedly be invested in his ticket purchase and resale activities, and he represented that the profits from the sales of those tickets would be shared among him and the victims, according to the statement.

Burd further assured the victims that investing with him carried no risk, and he promised returns on their investments of 30-40%. Burd made payments to certain victims that were purportedly their profits, and made representations to certain victims that portions of their profits were being reinvested in additional ticket deals, which in turn purportedly would generate more profits for those victim. In fact, Burd did not purchase or sell any material amount of tickets with the victims’ money, and he instead used their investments for his personal expenditures, according to the statement.

In total, Burd obtained approximately $447,000 from the victims over the course of the fraudulent scheme.

The charge of wire fraud carries a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross amount of gain or loss from the offense, whichever is greater.

Sentencing is scheduled for June 8.