‘I’d be lying if I said I was sorry’: Fake heiress Anna Sorokin gives first prison interview

‘The thing is, I’m not sorry’: In her first interview since being sentenced to four to 12 year in prison for swindling tens of thousands of dollars from banks and hotels to bankroll her lavish lifestyle, fake German heiress Anna Sorokin said she would do it all over again 

As Anna Sorokin prepares to spend the next four to 12 years in prison for swindling tens of thousands of dollars from banks and hotels to bankroll her lavish New York lifestyle, the fake German heiress says she would do it all over again. 

‘The thing is, I’m not sorry,’ Sorokin told The New York Times in in her first interview since being sentenced on Thursday. 

‘I’d be lying to you and to everyone else and to myself if I said I was sorry for anything,’ she said before adding: ‘I regret the way I went about certain things.’

Asked if she’d go through it all again if given the chance, Sorokin laughed and said: ‘Yes, probably so.’ 

Under the name Anna Delvey, Sorokin pretended to be the heir to a 60-million-euro fortune as she ripped off nearly $200,000 from banks, hotels and a private jet company and tried to lie her way into obtaining a $25million loan from a hedge fund. 

Sorokin has maintained she didn’t intend to swindle anyone, telling The Times that she was planning to pay back her creditors.  

‘My motive was never money,’ she said, explaining that she was trying to fund her dream of launching a $40million private club called the Anna Delvey Foundation.  

‘I was power hungry,’ she confessed. ‘I’m not a good person.’ 

Sorokin is now getting used to her new reality at Rikers, another kind of exclusive club far different from the one she dreamed of building. 

She said is currently writing a memoir about her time at the top of the Manhattan social ladder, which will be followed by a second book detailing her time in prison. 

When she’s released from prison, Sorokin will likely be deported to Germany, where she was raised after being born in Russia. 

From there she hopes to move to London and launch her own investment fund.  

Sorokin broke down in tears as she was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison on Thursday

Sorokin broke down in tears as she was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison on Thursday

Sorokin broke down in tears as she was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison on Thursday

The 28-year-old con artist was convicted on multiple counts of grand larceny and theft of services last month

The 28-year-old con artist was convicted on multiple counts of grand larceny and theft of services last month

The 28-year-old con artist was convicted on multiple counts of grand larceny and theft of services last month

In addition to the prison sentence, Sorokin was ordered to pay nearly $199,000 in restitution and $24,000 in fines

In addition to the prison sentence, Sorokin was ordered to pay nearly $199,000 in restitution and $24,000 in fines

In addition to the prison sentence, Sorokin was ordered to pay nearly $199,000 in restitution and $24,000 in fines 

Sorokin’s lengthy trial for grand larceny and theft of services came to an end when she was sentenced on Thursday, about a month after being convicted.  

The 28-year-old, who played with her own tabloid image during the trial with different fashion choices, pressed her hand to her face, squeezed her eyes shut and sobbed after her sentence was handed down. 

Judge Diane Kiesel said Sorokin had been ‘blinded by the glitter and glamour of New York City’ as she turned to fraud to finance a life she could never afford. 

‘I am stunned by the depth of the defendant’s deception,’ Kiesel said. ‘Ms Sorokin didn’t have big money. All she had was a big scam.’ 

Moments before she was sentenced, Sorokin briefly addressed the court, saying, ‘I apologize for the mistakes I made.’ 

In addition to the prison sentence, Sorokin was ordered to pay nearly $200,000 in restitution and $24,000 in fines. 

Her defense attorney Todd Spodek wouldn’t comment on how Sorokin was paying his legal fees. He also declined to answer questions on whether Sorokin is receiving any money from the Netflix or HBO deals currently in the works.  

Under the name Anna Delvey, Sorokin pretended to be the heir to a 60-million-euro fortune as she ripped off nearly $200,000 from banks, hotels and a private jet company

Under the name Anna Delvey, Sorokin pretended to be the heir to a 60-million-euro fortune as she ripped off nearly $200,000 from banks, hotels and a private jet company

Under the name Anna Delvey, Sorokin pretended to be the heir to a 60-million-euro fortune as she ripped off nearly $200,000 from banks, hotels and a private jet company

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has said it will seek to deport Sorokin to Germany following her release from state custody because she overstayed her 2017 visa. 

Sorokin has been in custody at Rikers Island since her October 2017 arrest and was facing 15 years in prison.   

Her grifting ruse between 2016 and 2017 included forging her identity as a wealthy German heiress known as Anna Delvey and falsifying bank records to further her scam. 

In all, prosecutors accused her of stealing some $275,000, including a $35,400 bill for a private plane, as well as unpaid bills for her month-long stays in five-star New York hotel rooms and meals at upscale restaurants.  

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan’s social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays. 

As part of the scam, prosecutors say she peddled bogus bank statements in her quest for a $22 million loan to fund a private arts club. She ended up being denied that loan but persuaded one bank to lend her $100,000 that she failed to repay. 

She was blinded by the glitter and glamour of New York City. 
Judge Diane Kiesel 

Sorokin was convicted of four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny and one count of attempted grand larceny following a month-long trial that drew attention for her courtroom fashion. 

Jurors acquitted her of two counts, including an allegation that she promised a friend an all-expenses paid trip to Morocco and then stuck her with the $62,000 bill. 

She was also found not guilty of one of the most serious charges in the indictment: Attempting to steal more than $1million from City National Bank. 

Her defense attorney, Todd Spodek, argued that Sorokin had been ‘buying time’ and always planned to settle her six-figure debts. 

He told jurors that Sorokin lacked criminal intent and was merely an ambitious businesswoman who got in over her head after being taken in by New York’s extravagance. He compared her at one point to Frank Sinatra, saying ‘they both created their own opportunities’ in New York. 

‘There’s a little bit of Anna in all of us,’ Spodek said during the trial. ‘Anna had to fake it until she could make it.’ 

Prosecutors, however, maintained that Sorokin was simply a fraudster just trying to get a taste of the high life. 

Judge Diane Kiesel said Sorokin had been 'blinded by the glitter and glamour of New York City' as she turned to fraud to finance a life she could never afford

Judge Diane Kiesel said Sorokin had been 'blinded by the glitter and glamour of New York City' as she turned to fraud to finance a life she could never afford

Judge Diane Kiesel said Sorokin had been ‘blinded by the glitter and glamour of New York City’ as she turned to fraud to finance a life she could never afford

Sorokin was convicted of four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny and one count of attempted grand larceny following a month-long trial that drew attention for her courtroom fashion

Sorokin was convicted of four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny and one count of attempted grand larceny following a month-long trial that drew attention for her courtroom fashion

Sorokin was convicted of four counts of theft of services, three counts of grand larceny and one count of attempted grand larceny following a month-long trial that drew attention for her courtroom fashion

Sorokin, who moved to Germany with her family in 2007 from her native Russia, had falsely claimed that her father was a diplomat or an oil baron. 

In reality, her father worked as a truck driver and later as an executive at a transport company until it became insolvent in 2013. He then opened a business installing underfloor heating.

Sorokin’s father disowned her following the verdict last month and said that she had borrowed money from them too. 

‘I really do hope my daughter finds what she is looking for, whatever it is,’ her father told DailyMail.com. ‘I do not have any influence on her life and what she does. It is down to her what she has done and it is something I am not comfortable to talk about.’

In an interview with Russian newspaper Komsomolskaya Prava, her father said: ‘Our daughter has never sent us any money. On the contrary, she was borrowing. Of course we are very concerned about her.

‘She has a selfish personality, we can’t do anything about it. We raised her well.’

Former high school classmates said Sorokin was an honors student and excelled in foreign languages, including English, German and French. 

She had always dreamed of working in the world of fashion and magazines, her childhood friends recalled.  

While most accounts of her early life said she left Germany to study at London’s prestigious Central St Martins College of Art, the school confirmed to DailyMail.com that she never attended despite being accepted. 

Instead, Sorokin returned to Berlin and interned in the fashion department of a public relations firm.

She then relocated to Paris where she secured a coveted internship at the French fashion magazine Purple. It’s believed to be around this time that she changed her name from Sorokin to Delvey.   

Acquaintances say Sorokin had spent several years playing the part of an art-obsessed German heiress across the world before she eventually came to New York with a designer-clad wardrobe and the social connections she needed to make it. 

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan's social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan's social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan’s social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan's social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan's social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays

Sorokin defrauded financial institutions and Manhattan’s social elite into believing she had an overseas fortune of about $67 million that could cover her jet-setting lifestyle, high-end clothing and lavish hotel stays 

She quickly went about proving herself to be an impossibly rich heiress who had plans to shake up New York’s art world with a multi-million private arts club that she thought about calling the Anna Delvey Foundation.

It would be an arts foundation that would include exhibitions, installations, pop-up shops, bars and restaurants. She compared the project to the SoHo house members’ club empire and said she planned to open branches in London, Los Angeles, Dubai and Hong Kong. 

Sorokin was already brushing shoulders with rich people in the years before she came to New York and started dazzling Manhattan's social elite

Sorokin was already brushing shoulders with rich people in the years before she came to New York and started dazzling Manhattan's social elite

Sorokin was already brushing shoulders with rich people in the years before she came to New York and started dazzling Manhattan’s social elite 

Sorokin managed to avoid suspicion among her wealthy friends in New York for months. 

She rented a $400-a-night room for several months at Manhattan’s expensive 11 Howard hotel. Concierges at the hotel – including Neff Davis who she would later become friends with – were gobsmacked when Sorokin would pass out $100 tips to them and Uber drivers.

Sorokin would spend big in designer stores and would regularly host large dinners for celebrities, artists and CEOs at lavish restaurants. 

She kept up the heiress ruse when she went looking for a $22 million loan to fund her new club in November 2016. 

She said the loan would be secured by a letter of credit from UBS in Switzerland and showed what prosecutors say were bogus bank statements that purported to substantiate the $67 million in assets she claimed to have. 

Spencer Garfield, a banker at the private equity fund Fortress, testified during her trial that Sorokin’s loan was rejected because she couldn’t produce proof of her fortune. 

Banker Ryan Salem testified that his City National Bank also denied a request to finance the private arts club because the financial statements just didn’t add up.

Despite a host of red flags, City National still agreed to lend Sorokin $100,000 in an overdraft that she promised to repay within days.  

Sorokin gave varying accounts of where her wealth actually came from, according to her acquaintances. She told some that her father was a Russian oil billionaire. Others were under the impression that her parents were high up in the German solar energy business

HOW ANNA MANAGED TO SECURE MONEY 

Sorokin sought a $22 million loan from Fortress Investment Group in 2017 to fund her arts club after showing the private equity firm fake documents claiming she had a 60 million euro fortune. 

They said they would consider it if she put up $100,000 for them to do due diligence, which is basically a background check of her financial records. 

She managed to get a $100,000 from a different bank, City National, by convincing them to give her an overdraft that she promised to repay within days. 

Sorokin then gave the $100,000 to Fortress. 

They spent $45,000 of it carrying out their financial review before Sorokin asked for $55,000 back, claiming she no longer needed their services. 

She never repaid City National. Instead, she managed to spend the entire $55,000 within a month to fund her lavish lifestyle. 

She also resorted to depositing bad checks and transferring funds out before they bounced – a process called check kiting. 

This is how she got the $30,000 to pay 11 Howard via a wire transfer.  

Between April 7 and April 11, she deposited $160,000 in bad checks into her Citibank account and transferred $70,000 out before they bounced. 

In August, she opened a different account with a different bank, Signature, deposited $15,000 in bad checks and withdrew $8,200 before they bounced.

Sorokin sought this $100,000 after Fortress agreed to consider her loan request if she provided the funds for them to do due diligence, which is basically a background check of her financial records.

She gave the $100,000 to Fortress and they spent $45,000 of it carrying out their financial review. Sorokin then asked for the remaining $55,000 back, claiming she no longer needed their services.  

She never repaid City National. Instead, she managed to spend the entire $55,000 within a month to fund her lavish lifestyle.

Between April 7 and April 11 in 2017, prosecutors said Sorokin deposited $160,000 in bad checks into her Citibank account and transferred $70,000 before the checks could bounce.

In August, prosecutors said Sorokin opened a bank account with Signature Bank and deposited $15,000 of bad checks into the account. She withdrew about $8,200 in cash before the checks were returned.

Sorokin ended up being kicked out of the 11 Howard after the hotel realized they didn’t have a credit card on file despite her racking up $30,000 in charges. When the hotel pressed her for payment, Sorokin told them a wire transfer was on the way. 

Citibank eventually did send the wire transfer for the full $30,000 amount, which prosecutors said she paid for using money from bad checks. 

But the hotel still locked Sorokin out of her hotel room in May 2017 while she was away on a trip to Nebraska because she couldn’t provide a working credit card.

Sorokin had chartered a private plane that cost $35,400 to and from the Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting in Omaha, Nebraska so she could try and meet billionaire Warren Buffet. She never paid the bill. 

That same month, Sorokin embarked on a $62,000 extravagant trip to Morocco that she had promised two friends – Vanity Fair photo editor Rachel Deloache Williams and her personal trainer Kacy Duke. 

They checked into a $7,000-a-night villa at the five star resort La Mamounia. 

Williams would later tell authorities she was forced to put the bill for the hotel on her credit card and that Sorokin had promised to pay her back $70,000 when they returned to New York. 

Sorokin was scolded by the judge during her trial for delaying proceedings because she wasn't happy with her outfit choices and treating the trial like a 'fashion show'

Sorokin was scolded by the judge during her trial for delaying proceedings because she wasn't happy with her outfit choices and treating the trial like a 'fashion show'

The one-time darling of the New York social scene and her attorney had enlisted the services of a stylist for her courtroom appearances

The one-time darling of the New York social scene and her attorney had enlisted the services of a stylist for her courtroom appearances

Sorokin was scolded by the judge during her trial for delaying proceedings because she wasn’t happy with her outfit choices and treating the trial like a ‘fashion show’

Months later when she hadn’t been paid back, Williams reported Sorokin to police and then the New York district attorney’s office. 

Sorokin was not found guilty of grand larceny in relation to the $62,000 she was accused of stealing from Williams.  

She was arrested in October 2017 for stealing $275,000 through multiple scams between November 2016 and August 2017. It emerged during the trial that Williams had helped set up her arrest by arranging a lunch for the pair in Los Angeles.

Almost as quickly as Sorokin was arrested, producers and screenwriters were clambering to secure the rights to her story. 

There are two productions in the works: a Netflix series produced by Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes and a dueling HBO series by Lena Dunham. 

During her trial, she was lambasted by the judge for seeming to care more about the productions than the trial. 

She was also reduced to tears several times during the trial when the judge scolded her for delaying proceedings because she wasn’t happy with her outfit choices and treating the trial like a ‘fashion show’.

The one-time darling of the New York social scene and her attorney had enlisted the services of a stylist for her courtroom appearances. 

Her stylist said that one of the factors weighing on outfit choices was that Sorokin’s courtroom style could affect how she is portrayed in the possible Netflix and HBO series about her.  

Hollywood fights over fake German heiress Anna Sorokin with duelling HBO and Netflix series in the works 

By Jennifer Smith for DailyMail.com 

The duplicitous story of Anna Sorokin is the stuff of a Hollywood fantasy. 

So it’s little wonder that almost as quickly as she was arrested, producers and screenwriters were clambering to get to the fake German heiress who duped Manhattan’s elite out of thousands of dollars in hotel stays and restaurant bills.  

Before Sorokin’s trial had even come to an end, there were already at least two productions in the works; a Netflix series produced by Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes and a dueling HBO series by Lena Dunham. 

Sorokin, who went by Anna Delvey before being arrested and locked up on Riker’s Island to face fraud allegations in 2018, is thrilled by the interest. 

‘She’s like, Okay, as long as Jennifer Lawrence or Margot Robbie play me,’ Neff Davis, a former hotel receptionist described as Sorokin’s ‘only remaining friend’, told Paper magazine last year. 

Jennifer Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence

Margot Robbie

Margot Robbie

Sorokin is desperate for either Jennifer Lawrence or Margot Robbie to play her in the series. Robbie’s representatives insisted she has nothing to do with either project

Sorokin was aghast that there were rumors Lindsay Lohan was being considered, Davis said.

‘Oh my god, no offense, but isn’t she like 30? My hair’s not even red anymore, did you tell them that,’ Davis claimed Sorokin told her during one conversation about it. 

‘She really, really wants Margot Robbie.

‘She just watched I, Tonya in Rikers and thinks Margot is badass. I’m sure Margot Robbie would kill it,’ Davis added.

Robbie’s representatives insisted to DailyMail.com that she is not attached to any project concerning Sorokin. 

Lawrence’s did not respond to repeated requests for comment.  

Davis, who was the receptionist at 11 Howard, a ritzy Soho hotel where Sorokin stayed for a month, racking up a bill of more than $30,000, has been asked to contribute to the Netflix series.

‘Netflix acquired my rights for me to be a consultant last June, so I’m unable to do any interviews right now,’ she told DailyMail.com this month.   

Lena Dunham

Lena Dunham

Shonda Rhymes

Shonda Rhymes

The creators: HBO is working with Lena Dunham (left) on its series whereas the Netflix production is being led by Shonda Rhymes, the creator of Grey’s Anatomy (right)

‘I am only associated with the Netflix/ Shondaland production and I can’t wait for the series to come out!’ she added. 

She declined to give further details of the project or about her relationship with Anna beyond the fact that they still speak ‘every day’.

‘I have mastered ‘media training’. 

‘I come from nothing and I promise you, I will not allow the media to f**k this up for me,’ she said when questioned about the project. 

Netflix would not share details either.  ‘We don’t have any updates,’ a spokesman said when contacted during Sorokin’s trial. 

The HBO series has its own informant in Rachel DeLoache Williams, a former Vanity Fair photo editor who was conned into paying the $62,000 bill for a trip she took with Sorokin to Marrakesh.  

It remains unclear when it will make it to screens.  

Neff Davis

Neff Davis

Rachel DeLoache Williams

Rachel DeLoache Williams

The ‘consultants’: Neff Davis, the former receptionist from 11 Howard who became friends with Sorokin, is being paid to work on the Netflix production. Rachel DeLoache Williams, the Vanity Fair photo-editor who went with Sorokin to Morocco, is being paid for the HBO series. She is shown testifying against Sorokin (right) during her trial 

Williams is less loyal to its muse. 

She testified against her during the trial but refused to say how much she was getting paid by HBO for working on the series. 

She is yet to recoup the $62,000 she had to put on her credit card as a result of Sorokin’s extravagance. At the time, it was more than she made in a year.

Soon after Sorokin’s guilty verdict was handed down, Gallery Books announced that Williams has a booking coming out in July titled: ‘My Friend Anna’. 

Whether or not she set out to inspire TV shows and movies, Sorokin is all too aware of them now. 

During her trial, she was lambasted by Justice Diane Kiesel for seeming to care more about the productions than the trial.

‘She seems more concerned about who is going to play her in the movie than what she’s done to the people she allegedly took advantage of,’ Kiesel told her last year.   

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