Man accused of stealing greater than 1,000 e-book manuscripts pleads responsible to wire fraud

An Italian man pleaded responsible on Friday in ny to impersonating editors and brokers so as to steal greater than 1,000 unpublished e-book manuscripts belonging to authors like Margaret Atwood and the actor Ethan Hawke.

Filippo Bernardini, 30, a London resident who had been employed there by Simon & Schuster, entered his plea to 1 rely of wire fraud earlier than U.S. magistrate decide Sarah Netburn in federal court docket in Manhattan.

Bernardini might face greater than a yr in jail beneath actually useful sentencing solutions at his scheduled April 5 sentencing earlier than one other decide, his lawyer Hannah McCrea mentioned.

Prosecutors mentioned that from August 2016 till his January 2022 arrest, Bernardini created pretend e mail addresses and registered greater than a hundred and sixty bogus domains to impersonate publishing professionals, in an effort to say authors’ works as his personal.

They mentioned the earlier Simon & Schuster rights co-ordinator would typically change a decrease case “m” with an “rn,” so as that “simonandschuster” would possibly seem as “sirnonandschuster,” for event.

‘Insider information’ used

The stolen manuscripts included a bit by a Pulitzer Prize-worthwhile author, prosecutors mentioned.

Bernardini “used his insider information of the publishing commerce to create a scheme that stole treasured works from authors and menaced the publishing commerce,” U.S. lawyer Damian Williams in Manhattan mentioned in an announcement.

McCrea, a federal public defender, declined to contact upon the plea.

Bernardini had pleaded not responsible to wire fraud and an aggravated id theft cost, following his arrest upon arriving at John F. Kennedy worldwide Airport.

Simon & Schuster was not accused of wrongdoing.

“safety of authors’ mental property is of the very biggest precedence for Simon & Schuster,” the writer mentioned in an announcement expressing gratitude for authorities’ assist.


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