After admitting in January that he had embezzled millions of dollars from celebrity clients, including Alanis Morissette, Jonathan Todd Schwartz is headed to jail.
The former entertainment and sports manager was sentenced Wednesday to six years in prison, CNN reported, the conclusion to a suit first leveled by Morissette in 2016. He stole around $5 million from the Canadian singer during a time period between 2010-2014 to support a lavish lifestyle, according to court documents. Schwartz worked under the firm GSO Business Management in Los Angeles.
“Mr. Schwartz used his clients’ funds as a personal ATM machine,” Deirdre Fike, assistant director for the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office, told CNN. Schwartz owes approximately $2 million in unpaid taxes.
According to The Associated Press, Morissette appeared at the sentencing and said Schwartz had misled her about his net worth while secretly taking money from accounts she had left in his trust.
“He did this in a long, systematic, drawn-out and sinister manner,” the singer said. Schwartz attributed an addiction to gambling as the reason for the thefts. He detailed his “double life” in an April guest column for The Hollywood Reporter.
Morissette’s new money manager had discovered the embezzlement, which Schwartz would conceal by reporting withdrawals as “sundry/personal expenses,” according to CNN. When GSO was contacted about the missing funds, Schwartz falsely claimed it was used to invest in the medical marijuana business.
While in court, Schwartz expressed that he alone was “responsible for this devastation,” saying, “I will spend the rest of my life asking for forgiveness.” Court papers list Schwartz’s salary as $1.2 million.
Though prosecutors were seeking a sentence of five years in prison, U.S. District Court Judge Dolly Gee sentenced Schwartz to six, citing the “sheer audaciousness of this conduct” as the reason for additional time. Gee also ordered that Schwartz pay $8.6 million in restitution. E! reports that Morissette and Schwartz’s other clients were reimbursed by the firm or through insurance.
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