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‘Rebecca’ musical producers sue backer, claim he invented investors and even faked a death

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In one e-mail to Wexler, Sprecher offered to put a dedication in the Playbill for the musical in Mr. Abrams’ memory, according to the complaint.

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The last-minute angel had read press reports about the show’s woes. He went as far as putting $2.25 million in escrow, according to the suit. Privacy was of "utmost importance" to the investor, who pulled out after receiving three anonymous emails warning about the show.

Sherri Hotton, 43, couldn’t immediately be reached for comment on the suit. She was arrested with her husband last week on charges of money laundering and wire fraud in connection with a separate case and is in federal custody, said Robert Nardoza, a spokesman for U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch in Brooklyn. Sherri Hotton was denied court-appointed counsel and is seeking an attorney, Nardoza said. Shargel said he is not representing her.

Ron Russo, a lawyer for Sprecher, said earlier this week that his client was cheated by an expert.

"There were hundreds of captains of industry who were duped by Bernie Madoff," Russo said in an interview. "This guy was as good as they come."

The case is Rebecca Broadway Limited Partnership v. Hotton, 653659/2012, New York State Supreme Court, New York County (Manhattan).

Editors: Mary Romano, Stephen Farr

To contact the reporters on this story:

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Philip Boroff in New York at pboroffbloomberg.net; Chris Dolmetsch in New York at cdolmetschbloomberg.net.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhythabloomberg.net; Jeffrey Burke at jburke21bloomberg.net.

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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