LA Lawyer who swindled firm out of $10.2million stole $10k from her best friend WEEKS before lawsuit
A high-flying lawyer accused of swindling a firm out of $10.2million for a Las Vegas gambling spree stole $10,000 from her best friend weeks before a fraud lawsuit was lodged against her, it is claimed.
Sarah King, 39, allegedly blew through the eight figure sum in six months at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas and used the money to fund her own ‘extravagant lifestyle.’
She is also said to have cut off her own family in a bid to hide her alleged antics.
The attorney had been carrying out her schemes to get more money up to the point the lawsuit was filed by LDR International – though she now claims she has just $11.98 to her name.
Now, her best friend Yumiko Sturdivant says she was among King’s victims – and lost $10,000 to the alleged fraudster.
Sturvidant and King had enjoyed several lavish trips together, including one to Las Vegas, where they drank champagne after going into business together.
Yumiko, a marketing manager, set up FDT with King in 2016, before the alleged fraudster stepped back from the company to pursue business consulting.
Her best friend Yumiko Sturdivant claims that the pair had enjoyed several lavish trips together, including one to Las Vegas, where they drank champagne after going into business together
King reportedly stole $10,000 from her best friend Yumiko weeks before they lodged a lawsuit against her
She told DailyMail.com that she viewed King as her family, and a ‘big sister’ who was initially an ‘amazing person’.
King was not previously a big gambler according to her friend, but said that she had ‘never gambled like what she is doing now.’ It’s unclear what drove King to the casinos in Sin City with such an all-consuming passion.
The FDT CEO claims that King also cut herself off from her family, with her sister also working as a lawyer, as she continued to get herself into a bigger hole of gambling debt.
Yumiko said: ‘We had a really good bond, we worked together at another law firm and then opened our own company – which I still own.
‘She hasn’t been involved in my company for a long time. She was very smart, and charismatic. Sara dressed well and had a heart when I met her.
‘Our relationship was one of best friends, I thought of her as my big sister. I know she had some problems when she divorced from her first husband, and she was struggling.
‘That is when she started the lending business, and she was hustling, that’s when I noticed a real change in her.
‘Our paths went different ways, but we got back in touch in January, we never had anything back between us until then. She was someone who I really loved in my life and looked up to.
The FDT CEO claims that King also cut herself off from her family, with her sister also working as a lawyer, as she continued to get herself into a bigger hole of gambling debt. Pictured, Sara King with her father
King spent the money she stole at Dior, Chanel and Rolex – as well as bragging that she was going to buy a luxury boat
King was not previously a big gambler according to her friend, but said that she had ‘never gambled like what she is doing now
‘I couldn’t believe that she had turned into such a high roller, she went to another level with her gambling.
‘We liked to go to restaurants together, she loved shopping and would gamble a little when we were in Vegas, but she wasn’t sitting for hours like now.’
The CEO got back in touch with King on January 5 to ask how she was, and the pair quickly fell back into old friendship patterns.
King told her friend her lending business was very successful, but she was having some marital issues with her second husband Kamran Pahlavi
But she quickly told her friend that there was a ‘good opportunity’ for her to make some money for her business.
Yumiko said: ‘She said that her business was successful, and she could help me make more money and it’s a good way to get back up on my feet.
‘I went away for my birthday but we continued to speak, and she text me while I was traveling on January 10.
‘She told me that if I invested $10,000 she could double it and get me a return of $20,000 in three days, and said that it was rare that it happened.
Sara Jacqueline King allegedly blew $10.2million she received from an investor at the Wynn in Las Vegas to fund her own ‘extravagant lifestyle.’
Yumiko Sturdivant said that she handed King $10,000 after they reconnected and was conned by her
King told her friend that her lending business was very successful, but she was having some marital issues with her second husband Kamran Pahlavi
‘I said that I didn’t feel comfortable doing that, I was on vacation and I didn’t have that money.
‘I work hard for my money, and she managed to convince me to give her $5,000 that day and then the other half the day after.
‘Sara is very good at what she does, manipulation and she knows me well, so she can manipulate me because I have a soft spot for her and we were close friends.
‘She never hurt me financially before, so why would I not trust her? She texted me to tell me that she was heading to the bank but there were problems and I asked her to do mine because I was stressed.
‘There was something in me that felt like something was going to go wrong, I didn’t want to believe it, but she just kept making excuses.’
King continued to make excuses for why she couldn’t return the money, telling her friend that it was because her husband Kamran was ‘blocking the accounts’.
Yumiko explained that she asked her friend to meet up when she returned to America, so she could get the cash – with King telling her that she was ‘working with Interpol’ to return it.
Yumiko said: ‘Sara is very good at what she does, manipulation and she knows me well, so she can manipulate me because I have a soft spot for her’
King has been pictured in the last week continuing to gamble in Las Vegas despite the lawsuit being served to her
She would share pictures of wads of cash on her social media, and send them to her prospective victims in a bid to earn their trust
She said: ‘It was just bullsh*t after bullsh*t. Eventually I had to contact Kamran and ask if he stole $12 million from her like she was claiming.
‘He didn’t seem surprised and said ‘Oh she told you that too’. He told me that she had stolen money from multiple people, was a gambling addict and had forged documents.
‘At this point I knew that the money was gone, I knew I wasn’t going to get it back and she is banned from Chase.
‘I just thought that it wasn’t possible, this could be the same Sara. It was a nightmare. So I texted her and told her to be honest with me.
‘But she kept lying, and then started insulting me after she found out I spoke to Kamran. She told me that I would regret this and I realized that was the real Sara coming out.
‘It is a very big betrayal for me. The money is one thing, but when it is your best friend and former business partner, a woman I felt was a sister shows she has no soul.
When contacted by DailyMail.com King’s mother, Heidi, (pictured with her daughter) declined to comment but confirmed that the family had been unaware of her crimes
She was sued in 2020 by Harpers Bazaar Summer Issue Cover Girl Celebrity CEO Manna Kadar (right) who lent her $70,000 during their friendship
King then offered the collateral of her wedding ring (right), which she reportedly bought herself, before replacing it with a fake AP watch (left) which would have been worth $97,175.
‘She would always be dressed head to toe in designer things before, but it’s just escalated to another level now.’
King handed over a fake Audemars Paquet watch to another friend she borrowed $70k from, beauty guru Manna Kadar, and repeated the process with Yumiko.
Manna added that King called her second husband Kamran Pahlavi as a ‘Persian Prince’, after discovering that he was the grandson of Iran’s Princess Ashraf.
Her former friend said that she thinks the total King swindled is ‘more than 10 million’, and that she had given fake Cartier bracelets and watches as collateral to other people.
Yumiko added: ‘King knew what she was doing. She looks successful, if she is telling you to invest for an opportunity and she’s a lawyer, why would you not? She is the biggest scammer, I have never seen such fakeness.
‘Sara abandoned her parents, she was no longer in contact with her family for some time before the lawsuit.
King attended a Republican fundraiser in 2017 with then-VP Mike Pence and Speaker Kevin McCarthy
Pictures obtained by DailyMail.com show the glamourous lawyer posing with high-profile politicians Pence and McCarthy at a luxury lunch event in Newport Beach, California, in 2017
Her ex-husband Kamran Pahlavi branded her as ‘sick’ and is the grandson of Iran’s Princess Ashraf, the late twin sister of the country’s last shah
‘It’s very disappointing, she truly loved her family. I met them, they were very nice people and to know that she vanished even from her family is unbelievable to me.’
When contacted by DailyMail.com King’s mother, Heidi, declined to comment but confirmed that the family had been unaware of her crimes.
It comes after DailyMail.com revealed that King attended a Republican fundraiser in 2017 with then-VP Mike Pence and Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
Pictures show the glamourous lawyer posing with high-profile politicians Pence and McCarthy at a luxury lunch event in Newport Beach, California, where she is based.
King can be seen smiling next to the pair at the event in Pelican Hill, with tickets starting at $2,700 each and was to raise money for endangered Republican congressional candidates.
She reportedly told her husband at the time that she had dreams of running for Congress and would have listened to Pence’s speech during the glitzy private affair.
There is no indication that McCarthy and Pence were aware that King was a suspected fraudster, and DailyMail.com have reached out to their representatives for comment.
A lawsuit filed at the California Central District court accused her of breaching her contract, fraud and civil theft – and includes several pictures of her with NFL stars such as Aaron Rodger, Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes
The facade of the Wynn is seen on the Las Vegas strip. Lawyers say it was there that the LA lawyer took up residency for several months while carrying out the alleged fraud
King, pictured at a $5,000 a plat Navy Seal Gala with Manna, was part of the ‘tight-knit group’ of entrepreneurs
King is being sued by LDR International for the total amount – but claims that she only has $11.98 to her name after splashing the cash at the $300-a-night hotel.
Lawyer for the company Ronald Richards told DailyMail.com that they plan to refer the matter for criminal investigation against King in the next few days.
The attorney also confirmed that he believes the sum that King defrauded her victims of is at a minimum of $11million – with five more coming forwards.
King also posted several cryptic messages on her Instagram days after being served with the papers for the lawsuit.
She posted a picture on February 5 which said ‘sometimes the hardest person to walk away from is the person you’ve always assumed you were.’
The attorney posted again five days later, with a picture of a handwritten note saying: ‘Life give us many chances’.
She posted another image of fictional lawyer Harvey Proctor, from Suits, which said: ‘Success is like being pregnant, everyone says congratulations but nobody knows how many times you were f***ed.’
King claimed that the loans were secured by collateral, including luxury cars, yachts, designer handbags, jewelry, watches and earnings from professional sports contracts
King spent the money she stole at Dior, Chanel and Rolex – as well as bragging that she was going to buy a luxury boat
King spent the money she stole at Dior, Chanel and Rolex – as well as bragging that she was going to buy a luxury boat.
A lawsuit filed at the California Central District court accused King of breaching her contract, fraud and civil theft and included several pictures of her with NFL stars such as Aaron Rodger, Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes.
Former friends of the lawyer have also come forward to say that she swindled them out of thousands after convincing them she had high-profile connections.
British Virgin Island firm LDR claims that they extended a series of loans to King from January to October 2022 as part of a business investment.
She promised to use the funds for loans to third-party borrowers and was handed a total of $10.2million.
King claimed that the loans were secured by collateral, including luxury cars, yachts, designer handbags, jewelry, watches and earnings from professional sports contracts.
The suit shows photos of the lawyer with several NFL stars, which it claims was used to help boost her profile.
It is alleged that she ‘engaged in a massive fraud’ and there were ‘no third-party loans from King Lending to any third party borrowers.’
In April, King’s first husband filed a lawsuit against her, claiming that she forged his signature and other documents in order to secure a $250,000 loan on their Newport Beach home.
Former friends of the lawyer have also come forward to say that she swindled them out of thousands after convincing them she had high-profile connections
Lawyers for the lending company – which used to employ the LA lawyer as an agent – say that King recently told them she has no money. A photo included in the suit shows King’s allegedly emptied bank accounts
Her second husband Kamran Pahlavi is the grandson of Iran’s Princess Ashraf and described King as having a ‘lavish lifestyle’ and being the ‘best-dressed woman’ he had ever met
A notice of default was then recorded against the $3million property ‘as a result of the fraudulent loan remaining unpaid.’
King is also accused of sending ‘racist’ text messages to her former partner about his new partner saying: ‘If the whore is in my house Shw [sic] better hide. She’s next on my list.’
She is also being sued by George Poulos, who filed a complaint against King and her company in Orange County, claiming he invested $125,000 and was never repaid and received ‘strange and threatening messages’.
In September, a financial company that leases luxury cars sued King and her law firm after claiming that the attorney owed them $300,000 in relation to her lease of a Rolls-Royce Dawn 2019.
The California Highway Patrol impounded the vehicle in 2021 when King was just 19 months into a 48-month lease.
King also added an odometer tampering device which violates state and federal law – reducing the vehicle’s value.
Pahlavi ‘substantiated’ the accusations against King and ‘fled to Morocco’
A spokesperson for the Wynn said: ‘King is no longer permitted on-property at Wynn Las Vegas.’
The lawsuit claims that King presented them ‘with fraudulent, falsified, and altered King Lending bank statements’ and that ‘she altered the bank statements to show deposits/payments by third-party borrowers that were in fact never made.’
It also claims that she sent photos to LDR and their agent Laurent R in order to gain their ‘trust and confidence.’
She sent them a picture of herself with the NFL players at a Capital One golf tournament at the Wynn Golf club in 2022.
She also said that she had borrowers who were in the NHL, NBA and MLB as well as a friend who was a ‘hair extension person’ for the Kardashians.
The lawsuit claims King also ‘falsely represented’ that King Lending received $6.3 million in loan repayments from borrowers and ‘redeployed’ the fund to cover more loans.
It claims that as of February 9 King was still asking for more money so she could ‘try and make back the money she has stolen’.