NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A co-defendant with radio host Craig Carton has pleaded guilty to defrauding investors in a multi-million dollar ticket Ponzi scheme.
Michael Wright entered the plea Thursday in Manhattan federal court. Carton has plead not guilty.
Police say Carton, along with Wright, are accused of wire fraud, securities fraud, and conspiracy to commit fraud in connection with a scheme to solicit investors to fund a purported business buying and reselling blocks of tickets to music, entertainment, and sporting events.
The 42-year-old Wright of Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, told a magistrate judge he withdrew $550,000 in December 2016 from a ticket-selling business account at Carton’s instruction to pay toward Carton’s debts.
Wright agreed not to challenge any sentence up to two years and three months in prison.
A third defendant pleaded guilty to securities fraud last October and is serving 6 1/2 years in prison.
Carton is scheduled for trial next month on fraud charges.
Authorities say the defendants allegedly solicited investments in ticket reselling enterprises purportedly engaged in purchasing and reselling large blocks of concert tickets for substantial profits, either on their own or through Joseph Meli, attributed as a New York-based businessman.
Carton, a former long-time morning show radio shock jock on Sports Radio WFAN with Boomer Esiason, was arrested in September 2017 and later entering a plea of not guilty.
Starting from August 2016, he’s accused of running the operation with Wright allegedly using about $4.6 million of investors’ money, promising A-list concert tickets. Instead, prosecutors say Carton used the money to pay gambling debts.
He left WFAN shortly after the arrest.