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One of two accused in Lady Gaga-Adam Lambert concert fraud strikes deal

Charge against Loy will be dropped if victims are reimbursed

July 14, 2010|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- One of two men accused of taking money for tickets to a concert in Jefferson County that was supposed to feature pop music stars Lady Gaga and Adam Lambert struck a deal with the Berkeley County Prosecuting Attorney's office to dismiss the fraud charge against him.

A felony count of obtaining money by false pretenses that was filed against Sherman L. Loy, 45, of Martinsburg, will be dismissed if authorities are able to verify that 11 people who filed complaints with the police after purchasing concert tickets have been repaid a total of $6,445, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Christine Riley said Wednesday.

In Berkeley County Magistrate Court on Wednesday, Loy's attorney, Michael Santa Barbara, said he was prepared to distribute 29 checks totaling $14,843 to reimburse everyone who purchased concert tickets, not just those who filed a police report.

Two young women told Riley in court Wednesday that they filed reports with police but were not listed as victims in the court documents charging Loy and Dean R. DeSana, 46, of Martinsburg.

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DeSana, who also was charged with one felony count of obtaining money by false pretenses, waived his right to a preliminary hearing, Riley said.

Several victims who attended Wednesday's hearing received a check in the courtroom from Santa Barbara, who also gave them a copy of a two-page statement by his client.

The checks were written from a Santa Barbara law firm account and Loy's attorney said his client borrowed the money from his mother to reimburse the victims.

Santa Barbara said Loy decided it was in his best interest to resolve the allegations to avoid extending harm to his reputation and hair salon business, Hair by Luke, at 442 Winchester Ave.

"He cares about the community," Santa Barbara said. "This is where he makes his living."

Loy indicated in the news release that he was not involved in the planning of the concert or contracts.

Police determined that no contract was ever finalized for Lady Gaga or Lambert's performance, according to court records.

"Why on Earth would I be involved in such an obvious fraud, that was so certain to come to light and would damage my name, my reputation, my relationships and my business?" Loy said in the news release.

"As the concert idea moved forward, and people paid for their tickets, I never felt that I was getting away with something or getting over on them, because I knew in my heart that the concert would take place.

"I made a mistake in who I trusted and now, by stepping up to the plate and paying all of these people, I am working to put this mess behind me, and to regain the support and trust of the community," Loy said.

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