By ALEXA ECKEMBRECHER
In Gwinnett County, Ga., police are looking for a distinguished businessman accused of swindling Super Bowl fans out of three quarters of a million dollars.
As Atlanta’s WSB-TV reports, nearly a dozen Georgians have notified authorities of the fraudulent Super Bowl ticket sales. Buyers were promised 100-level seating with access to the concierge lounge and a few pre-parties. Surprisingly, among those who filed police reports, is the businessman’s own mother. The same man has been reported as “missing” since the beginning of the new year by his wife.
Ketan Shah, the alleged scammer, owns a digital printing shop and is a member of various community boards.Thursday, however, marked the beginning of his dismissal from said boards. A statement on the Georgia Indo-American Chamber of Commerce’s website said Shah had been suspended from its board of directors and dismissed its connection to the alleged scheme.
“It’s just crazy, mind blowing,” said victim Alan Tartt to WSB-TV’s investigative reporter Nicole Carr. “Everything seemed legit.”
Tartt connected with Shah in November because of a mutual friend. He told police he soon began to make $5,000 payments to Shah — with two others — on $20,000 worth of tickets.
His mother claimed to have lost $36,000, but declined to press charges. Four other men filed charges against Shah and, as records show, they too lost similar amounts in ticket purchases, each.
The largest sum of money reported missing was made by a Columbus, Ga., business-man. He made a payment of $500,000 to Shah as he was told he would have the opportunity to host an arena Super Bowl event in addition to game-day tickets.
What is extraordinary of this situation is that the victims were not strangers to the accused. Shah knew these people for countless years and he still decided to disappear with payment amounts prior to delivering on his promises.
Bhavi Shah, Ketan Shah’s wife, told authorities that her husband also took out a half-million dollar loan against the business without her knowledge and is uncertain as to why he would do such a thing or where he might be located.
Overall, this story was reported with imperative sources and details. Had it not been done this way, it would not have been so interesting to read. Likewise, as a result of the writing style, it would surely be interesting to get Shah’s side of the story — if he is found.