Which: I thought we all kind of figured that? Anyway, not only is Michael Prozer (Season 2, Episode 2 — we’re going way back here) not worth the $400 million he claimed he was worth on the show, he isn’t even worth the $21 million he paid a bank employee to forge that he was worth (presumably, he did have the $25,000 he paid said employee). It’s all very complicated — fraud is always very complicated — but basically: dude faked that he had money so he could get more money, then faked that he had money so he could get a date, and then got caught and now is going to jail for up to 30 years.
The Tampa Bay Observer is all over this story. This article from today’s paper is incredible, especially considering it was read almost exclusively by grandparents over coffee and grapefruit this morning:
“Prozer appeared on ‘Millionaire Matchmaker’ in April 2009, portraying himself as a successful online entrepreneur looking for a beautiful, dark-haired life partner who would mesh with his high-flying lifestyle and help him parent his two young sons.
Prozer showed off what he said were his private plane and 33,000-square-foot mansion, all paid for, he said, with his earnings from his Internet company that facilitated credit payments for people in South America.
The star of the show, matchmaker Patti Stanger, described Prozer as ‘trailer park trash.’ She pleaded with him to let her change his bowl haircut, put him in nice clothes or get a plastic surgeon to give him a chin implant. But Prozer said no, then showed up at a dating mixer wearing what Stanger described as a ‘hick outfit’ looking like a ‘doofus clown.’
His date with ‘Elana’ went spectacularly badly and will probably be most remembered for the fact that he urinated behind some bushes and then splashed his date with water while riding a Jet Ski.
AMAZING. And yet, it’s not just entertainment. Some lessons are hidden within.
1. Fraud is complicated
2. If you commit fraud, you’re going to get caught
3. Especially if you go on TV and brag about being richer than you are/can be
4. The Tampa Bay Observer is a great newspaper
5. Patti Stanger knows exactly what she’s talking about
Oh, and one more thing:
“He was jailed after a judge revoked his bail when he lied about an attempt to buy two luxury cars under the corporate name, GFYS Consolidated Holdings, an acronym for ‘Go F— Yourself.’”
Photo Credit: flickr/leo!