Judge OKs $446,995 Wentworth Forfeiture
LOS ANGELES — A federal judge this afternoon granted the government’s preliminary order of forfeiture following gay porn star Jarec Wentworth’s conviction on extortion charges.
Wentworth, 25, was present at today’s hearing at federal court in Los Angeles when U.S. District Judge John F. Walter approved the forfeiture of $446,995 from three of the gay porn star’s Wells Fargo Bank accounts, which were seized after he was arrested.
Wentworth, a former Men.com and Sean Cody performer, was found guilty last week on numerous felony extortion counts. He is currently housed at the Metropolitan Detention Center in downtown Los Angeles awaiting a Sept. 21 sentencing hearing.
The gay porn star extorted 51-year-old multimillionaire MagicJack exec Donald Burns out of $500,000, a jury found last week.
Burns also was forced to hand over his Audi R8 worth $180,000 over to Wentworth, but the pink slip was never handed over to Wentworth, who later demanded that Burns pay up even more, including $1 million and the purchase of a Los Angeles condo.
The prosecution's case was largely built on the numerous text messages found on mobile phones of Wentworth and Burns, as well as testimony from a law enforcement agent about the extraction of evidence from Wentworth’s phone, telephone audio recordings and bank records, as well as a number of gay porn performers and Burns.
Burns, which prosecutors said had a "taste for young men,” admitted to giving Wentworth money to have sex with him at least four times.
He also said he gave him $1,500 to $2,500 every time the gay porn actor introduced him to other male models and performers.
"It was partly a coping mechanism from the loss of my long-term relationship," Burns told a jury when asked why he had paid Wentworth to hook him up with other adult stars.
Burns met Wentworth in 2013 when he considered investing in the gay porn industry, but two years later Burns told the FBI that he was the victim of a shakedown after Wentworth allegedly threatened to go public about his sexual interests on Twitter.
It wasn’t clear how or where $53,005 of Burns’ $500,000 payment to Wentworth was spent.
Burns will be eligible to reclaim the $446,995 by petitioning the court for a hearing without a jury to adjudicate the validity of his interest in the money.