Nicole Murphy has been scammed.
Troy David Stratos, a financial adviser and close friend to Eddie Murphy‘s ex-wife Nicole, has confessed to swindling $10 million of the reality star’s $15 million divorce settlement. Stratos, 50, persuaded Nicole to let him invest a bulk of her funds into offshore accounts in the Middle East with the promise of a high rate of return. Turns out, he hadn’t invested one dollar into these said accounts, but instead funneled massive sums of Nicole’s money into a trust which funded his own lavish lifestyle.
It gets worse. The conman, who has known Nicole since they were teenagers, pulled the wool over her eyes several times. The pair took a trip in Europe together, which Stratos claimed he’d paid for out of his own pocket. Unbeknownst to Nicole, Stratos opened a secret bank account in Florida and used portions of her money to pay for the entire trip. The pseudo financial advisor also conned Nicole into letting him live in her 10-bedroom home in Granite Bay, California while he promised connections to a royal Middle Eastern family interested in purchasing the property. Turns out, there was no royal family to speak of.
Sources close to Stratos say Nicole isn’t his only victim. The conman has swindled dozens of wealthy people under the guise of promised investments, using their money to support his gambling addiction and extravagant lifestyle. “I’m glad to hopefully have this really bad chapter in my life coming to an end with Troy Stratos finally being held accountable for what he did to me and my family,” Murphy told The Daily Mail. “Hopefully with his day in court, justice will prevail and Troy Stratos will never be able to take advantage of someone’s trust ever again.”
Stratos is pleading guilty to 11 counts of wire and mail fraud, two counts of money laundering, and one count of obstruction of justice. His sentencing is scheduled for November and the scammer faces up to 20 years in jail. Murphy and her lawyers also plan to hit Stratos with a civil suit in order to recover at least some of the millions he took from her.
SOURCE: The Daily Mail | IMAGE CREDIT: Splash News