LOS ANGELES – A concert promoter with operations in Dallas, Texas and West Hollywood has been arrested on federal wire fraud charges in a case that alleges he defrauded investors in connection with concerts and other events.
Gabriel Martin Reed, 46, a former Malibu resident who recently relocated to Las Vegas, Nevada, was arrested by special agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Saturday afternoon in McKinney, Texas.
Reed, who does business under the name Gabe Reed Productions, was arrested pursuant to a criminal complaint filed on April 19 in United States District Court in Los Angeles. The case against Reed was announced today after the complaint was unsealed during Reed's first court appearance. The complaint charges Reed with wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.
Over an 8½-year period, Reed represented himself as a promoter and organizer of hard rock music events, as well as wrestling matches for World Wrestling Entertainment. According to the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint, Reed solicited investors in concert events by touting longstanding relationships with well-known musicians, showing props from alleged previous tours, and, in some instances, creating fabricated financial records related to music events.
The complaint alleges that Reed falsely told investors that musical artists had agreed to participate in events and that their funds would be used to provide up-front financing for the events. However, in many instances, the musical artists had not agreed to participate and, rather than using the funds for the events, Reed allegedly used the investors' funds for personal expenses.
One Los Angeles investor agreed to put $100,000 into a concert tour Reed was calling “Titans of Rock.” However, many of the promised artists had not agreed to participate in the tour. An FBI review of bank records showed the victim's money was used to pay for Reed's personal expenses, including child support, costs related to a birthday, and meals at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse and Mr. Chow in Beverly Hills, according to the affidavit. Over the course of several months in 2015, the $100,000 “had been depleted,” due in part to ATM withdrawals, and the FBI was “unable to identify the payment of any expenses related to a concert or tour,” the affidavit states.
The complaint alleges that Reed solicited money from at least 15 victims who suffered losses of at least $1.4 million.
Reed made his initial court appearance this morning in United States District Court in Sherman, Texas. Reed has agreed to appear in federal court Los Angeles at a date to be determined. He remains in custody until a detention hearing set for Friday in Texas.
Reed is charged with wire fraud for allegedly bilking the Titans of Rock investor and aggravated identity theft in relation to another promoter whose name Reed allegedly used in connection with the wire fraud.
A criminal complaint contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.
If he is convicted of the charges, Reed would face a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison for the wire fraud count and a mandatory, consecutive two-year sentence for the aggravated identity theft charge.
Investors who provided money to Reed and believe they were defrauded should contact the FBI's Los Angeles Field Office at (310) 477-6565.
The case against Reed is being investigated by the FBI.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Poonam Kumar of the Major Frauds Section.
USAO – California, CentralUpdated May 2, 2017
Central District of California DOJ / 17-091 / May 02, 2017