Nashville woman who used investor funds for plastic surgery sentenced to prison

The case was investigated by the FBI.
The woman scammed investors by claiming that her sports marketing agency represented famous athletes.
Published: Jan. 25, 2023 at 11:57 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 26, 2023 at 9:43 AM CST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMSV) – A Nashville woman who scammed investors by claiming that her sports marketing agency represented famous athletes was sentenced Tuesday to 70 months in federal prison.

The decision was announced by the U.S. Attorney Henry C. Leventis for the Middle District of Tennessee on Wednesday.

Gray Area Marketing owner Katie Lynn Mancuso, 41, was initially charged in September 2021. Prosecutors said Mancuso operated a fraudulent scheme in which she received $2.8 million from investors. Mancuso solicited funds from investors beginning in 2017 and lied when she said her agency had been awarded contracts to perform marketing services for professional athletes.

Mancuso exaggerated Gray Area’s assets and promised to repay investor’s funds within 90 days and with a rate of return usually between 15%-25%, according to prosecutors. Mancuso also provided investors with fake invoices and emails to make her business appear legitimate, including invoices falsely reflecting money owed to Gray Area by vendors such as Nike, Oakley, and Under Armour for services rendered.

“Between June 2017 and February 2021, Mancuso solicited funds from at least 26 investors. Although she repaid some investors, using funds from others, the total loss to investors was more than $1.1 million,” a media release said. “Mancuso used the investment funds to pay her living expenses and at hotels, bars, and to obtain plastic surgery.”

Mancuso pleaded guilty to the charges in October 2022. U.S. District Judge William L. Campbell, Jr. also ordered Mancuso to pay more than $1 million in restitution and spend a term of four years of supervised release at the conclusion of her prison term.

The case was investigated by the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathryn W. Booth prosecuted the case.