RAYMORE, Mo. -- A former wedding photographer was sentenced in federal court Wednesday for a fraud scheme to dupe dozens of women into having sex – which he recorded – under the guise they were rehearsing for a pornography movie.
Mario Ambrose Antoine, 34, of Raymore, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Beth Phillips to 10 years in federal prison without parole.
On May 12, 2017, Antoine pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud. Antoine admitted that he defrauded numerous victims in a scheme that lasted from Aug. 28, 2011, until Oct. 11, 2016. Antoine, posing in various roles as a company owner, recruiter, talent manager, photographer and videographer for multiple fictitious companies and private modeling websites (such as “Playboy Worldwide,” and “Playboy Asia”), induced women to engage in sexual and pornographic activity with him. Antoine promised the women, who signed contracts and modeling release forms, they would be paid thousands of dollars by these fictitious entities for their auditioning and modeling activity.
More than two dozen women victimized by this scheme were identified and located by investigators. Victims of the wire fraud scheme were promised payments cumulatively totaling at least $550,000 and as much as $1.5 million.
"He told me I had to audition... and do several different sex acts (with him), which I did," said one victim FOX 4 interviewed last October.
When she hadn't received her money, she called Antoine, but he told her she had violated the terms of their contract.
"Oh, you don't get the money because you broke a rule of the contact by telling someone what you did," the woman says he told her, and at that point, she knew she'd been deceived.
According to court documents, weeks and months would pass and none of these women were ever paid. When the young women asked when the money would arrive, they were given excuses. Eventually, in many cases, Antoine engaged in a blackmail and extortion scheme. He created fake Facebook profiles through which he contacted the friends, boyfriends or employers of these women and informed them that the young woman was a porn star. These messages would often be accompanied by pictures of the young women engaged in sexual activity.
FOX 4 Problem Solvers have done several stories on Mario Antoine's crimes.
He defrauded brides and grooms out of wedding photos, limousine rides, DJs and other services then violated his probation by defrauding another couple.
Read more about him in this FOX 4 Problem Solver report: No stranger to trouble, photographer back behind bars after no-showing couple's wedding.
This case was investigated by the FBI, the Raymore, Mo., Police Department and the Office of the Missouri Attorney General.