An agent for six NFL players has been charged with mail fraud as part of an alleged scheme to swindle his clients out of millions of dollars in an investment deal.
Vinnie Porter, who is listed as the agent for six players, was arrested and charged along with New York-based financial advisor Joseph Vaccaro on a federal complaint accusing the men of telling their clients they needed $20 million to purchase 50 percent of 13 Burger King franchises located in Virginia.
The actual price for the deal was $16 million, and according to the complaint, Porter and Vaccaro, along with a third person working with the FBI as a confidential informant, would split the extra $4 million and then draw profits off their concealed part of the ownership.
Porter is listed as the agent for New England Patriots tight end Brian Tyms, New York Giants linebacker Devon Kennard and Patriots running back Jonas Gray. However, Porter told The Smoking Gun on Wednesday that Gray recently fired him.
Porter, 35, declined to comment when asked if he told his clients that he had been arrested.
In recordings cited in the court filings, the informant asked Porter and Vaccaro if they were "cool not disclosing, not telling, lying, whatever you want to call it, about the kickbacks, the structure, anything like that."
Porter is heard on the recordings saying, "Yeah, we’d all be committing suicide."
The pair is scheduled to appear in court on Feb. 2, the day after the Super Bowl.
- Phil Watson