Sutherland Roped in By Ponzi Scheme

"24" star was bullish on Mexican cattle con: Prosecutors

By Greg Wilson
|  Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010  |  Updated 8:33 AM EDT
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Jack Bauer may be looking for revenge.

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Jack Bauer may be hunting down a certain con man soon.

Kiefer Sutherland, who plays the itinerant, rule-bending government agent on "24," was taken for $869,000 in  Ponzi scheme that had him thinking he was investing in Mexican cows, according to federal prosecutors. The alleged con man, Michael Wayne Carr, is accused of doctoring papers to trick Sutherland's financial advisers into thinking the deal was legit. The cows were to be bought south of the border and brought to the U.S., where they would be sold at a big profit, prosecutors said.

While Bauer might exact revenge by lopping off fingers, in real life Sutherland puts his trust in the legal system.

"Mr. Sutherland has been very friendly and helpful with our investigation," Deputy District Attorney Stephen Maier told People magazine. "I'm sure he's happy someone's getting to the bottom of this."

Sutherland made an initial investment with Carr and turned what he thought was a six-figure profit. But cops say Carr wrote the actor that check just to set him up for the big fall.

Months later, Carr allegedly approached Sutherland's financial advisers with a similar deal -- one that required an $869,000 investment. Sutherland, who claims he has never met or even spoken with Carr, told authorities his people checked out and and approved the deal, but he never saw another dime, according to TMZ.

Court papers say Carr, who will be arraigned Feb. 8, admitted that he "doctored" the paperwork to trick Sutherland's advisers. Prosecutors said Carr took in several investors with the scam, including a New Mexico couple for $175,000.

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