| Crime |

Haider Zafar, Man Who Defrauded Heat Players, to Plead Guilty

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Haider Zafar had quite some balls. He defrauded Mike Miller, James Jones, and Rashard Lewis out of a combined $7.5 million in a shady investment scheme, and then turned around to use some of that money to buy season tickets to watch his victims play basketball.

Zafar was of course caught and could have been facing, at worst, more than 100 years in jail, but has agreed to plead guilty in the case.

Zafar pretended to be a member of a wealthy Pakistani family that owns the Hashoo Group, and agreed to buy a three season ticket package to Heat games worth $1.055 million. A Miami Heat sales executive allowed Zafar to pay for the package later, but he then used his new connections to ingratiate himself to Heat players. In fact, Miller claimed that a Heat executive had introduced him to Zafar in the first place.

In Miller's case, Zafar said he wished to invest as much as $30 million in many of Miller's business interests, but claimed his money was tied up oversees. In turn, he offered Miller the chance to supposedly invest in one of his own investment schemes, but in true conman style told Miller he only had a matter of days to make a decision. That's how Miller ended up loosing $1.7 million.

Zafar also offered a similar deal to Jones and Lewis, and collected more than $7 million in total.

Zafar never invested a cent of that money.

Zafar it turns out was quite the busy conman. He pleaded guilty in an Ohio in February to an unrelated land swindling deal, but has now agreed to plead guilty when he is transferred back to Florida. He was charged with five counts of wire fraud.

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