The suspect allegedly posted pictures of his unauthorized luxury purchases on Instagram
QUEENS, New York -- A celebrity personal shopper from New York City has been charged with swindling comedian Kevin Hart out of more than $1 million in credit card purchases.
The suspect allegedly used Hart's credit cards to buy a series of high-end luxury items, from fine artwork to expensive watches and jewelry - and allegedly posted photos of the items on his own Instagram page, officials say.
Dylan Jason Syer, 29, of Long Island City, has been indicted and arraigned on grand larceny and other charges, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.
Glendale police say part of the investigation was conducted on the West Coast in February 2019 when they began looking into numerous unauthorized purchases made to credit cards in Hart's name.
Glendale police say detectives found numerous unauthorized purchases traced back to Syer, including high-end jewelry purchased at a Glendale store and shipped to New York. Glendale police transferred the case to the Queens district attorney for further investigation.
Items that were fraudulently bought in Hart's name from 2017 to 2019 included 5 Patek Phillipe watches valued at more than $400,000, two Louis Vuitton bags, fine art and collectibles, according to the Queens DA. Syer allegedly posted photos of many of the items on his Instagram page.
"The defendant thought he was beyond reach and was living out his uber-rich lifestyle fantasies," Katz said. "But my team uncovered the bogus purchases - from the credit card charges being processed by the bank, down to tracking FedEx packages delivered to Syer's home and business."
Syer was arraigned late Wednesday afternoon on a 10-count indictment charging him with grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen property, identity theft and scheme to defraud.
Katz said Syer first met Hart in 2015 through his personal shopping business, Sire Consulting, through which he was asked to buy several items for the actor.
Through that connection, Syer obtained the actor's various credit card numbers with the understanding that he would only make authorized purchases.
"This should serve as a cautionary tale for everyone," Katz said. "Regardless of whether you are a celebrity or not, anyone can fall victim to this kind of fraud."
If convicted Syer faces up to 25 years in prison.