Who is Anna Delvey in Invent Anna will be a question on many people’s lips as they watch Netflix’s major new true-crime drama.
If you are looking to fill a Bridgerton, Grey’s Anatomy Where Scandal– empty size, look no further.
From producer extraordinaire, Shonda Rhimes, the limited miniseries, based on Jessica Pressler’s gripping exposition in The cupdelves into the who, what, where and why behind Anna Delvey’s story.
So who is Anna Delvey? What were his crimes? Who did she scam? We are investigating.
This article contains SPOILERS for the Inventing Anna series. You have been warned.
Is ‘Inventing Anna’ a true story?
From “it girl grifter” to “jailbird” – if all that sounds like the stuff of a crazy TV series, well, Shonda Rhimes was light years ahead of you.
When Jessica Pressler’s article first hitting the internet, Delvey was already jailed on Rikers Island without bail. This is where the Netflix series begins. As Anna Delvey’s 10-month-long ‘get rich’ scam came to light, the TV mogul was already creating a dramatized version of the story – teaming up with her Shondaland partner , Betsy Beers, for the first series she created herself since Scandal.
Fast forward a few years later – and slightly delayed due to the pandemic – Inventing Anna is one of the most anticipated TV shows of the year. the semi-fictional story (note: this is a drama, not a documentary) chronicles Delvey’s fascinating journey – his rise to the high life, his legendary status, his eventual downfall, and the legal battle that followed. All the while, the documentary asks the question, is Anna Sorokin New York’s biggest con man, or is she just the new face of the dark side of the American dream?
Is Anna Delvey a real person and who is she?
Anna Delvey might be one of the most recognizable names in New York’s elite – for all the wrong reasons. The self-proclaimed German socialite, entrepreneur and millionaire heiress was actually none of these.
Her real name is actually Anna Sorokin. She was born in Russia to a middle-class family and a con artist who ran away with fraudulent friends and businesses, to fund her lavish lifestyle.
All the trappings of a wealthy background — designer clothes, invitations to exclusive events, and effortless confidence — helped her look the part. But, in reality, she racked up big debts in boutique hotels, charter flights she couldn’t afford, tried to get loans for a private art club she hoped to open, and made empty promises to pay back friends via bank transfers that never came through.
How Much Money Did Netflix Pay Anna Delvey/Anna Sorokin?
According to Insider, Netflix paid Delvey $320,000, for royalties and tips. A huge sum, no doubt, but she spent most of it reimbursing the institutions she defrauded, in state-imposed fines and legal fees.
Initially, these charges along with the rest of his assets were frozen due to the “Son of Sam” law – which prevents criminals from profiting from their crimes. But it was “unfrozen” because she used it to compensate all the victims she had defrauded.
What happened to Anna Delvey / Anna Sorokin?
Over a period of 10 months, Anna Sorokin / Anna Delvey successfully scammed businesses out of $275,000.
The long arm of the law quickly caught up with her, and in 2019 a Manhattan jury indicted Anna Sorokin (Delvey) on three counts of robbery and one count of attempted robbery. Even then, Anna couldn’t stop the act and hired a stylist to keep up appearances – her outfits were neatly documented on Instagram.
She was sentenced to a minimum of four years in prison after a lengthy trial.
Where is Anna Delvey / Anna Sorokin now?
Delvey served two years in a New York state prison before being paroled in February 2021. She was detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in March for overstaying the duration of his visa.
An immigration judge ordered her to remain in detention pending deportation to Germany (where her family moved when she was a teenager). As of February 2022, she remains in an ICE detention center in upstate New York. And in a very recent article for Insider Delvey opens up and explains things from his perspective.
Thanks to Shonda Rhimes, we’ll all have a front-row seat to explore Delvey’s story, February 11 on Netflix.