A former money manager who already spent nearly five years in prison for defrauding several movie stars out of their money has been caught again – this time for illegally using a New Jersey man’s credit card, court papers show.
Dana Giacchetto of New York and Los Angeles surrendered at U.S. District Court in New York City Thursday on charges of wire fraud and access device fraud.
His latest crime, according to the papers filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, is that he stole a New Jersey man’s credit card number and charged $10,405 for food, liquor, travel and dental work to it in early 2013. The victim, who was not identified in court papers, saw the charges after American Express questioned a $208 Priceline.com attempted charge.
Giacchetto, now 51, gained notoriety in 2000 when he was charged with stealing $9.8 million from movie stars and the members of a rock band. He bought luxuries for himself and made loans and gifts to friends, according to court papers filed at the time.
He pled guilty in August 2000 to fraud charges and was sentenced to four years and nine months in federal prison for the offenses.
Among his famous victims, according to the New York Daily News, were Matt Damon, Tobey Mcguire and Ben Stiller. The court documents also said members of a well-known rock band fell victim to his schemes, but the papers did not name any of the victims.
Newspaper accounts describe Giacchetto as a hard partier who hung out with movie stars. Among the things he spent the stolen money on were high priced hotels, luxury cars, travel, and paying off early investors. He also gave $90,000 to the New York Arts Academy and $5,000 to the New York Police Scholarship Fund.
The money was funneled through The Cassandra Group, a registered investment advisor, where Giacchetto served as president and CEO. He told clients the money was safe because Cassandra invested conservatively and did not have custody of the funds. However, he “looted” the money, the court said, mostly by endorsing checks drawn on the clients' accounts.