Fake German heiress Anna Delvey, the subject of the hit Netflix drama Inventing Annahas spoken about her release from prison under house arrest and “trying to right what I did wrong”.
In her first interview since her release from the Orange County Detention Center — where she spent 18 months after U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) found she had overstayed her visa — Delvey said she was “really happy” to be back in Manhattan and praised her. her lawyer for “aligning with her vision” and fighting to get her bail.
“Nothing was guaranteed. They denied the warranty before. It was an exercise in perseverance,” Delvey said The New York Times. “So many immigration lawyers told me I would be deported to Mars before I left for New York. And I just had to find the person who [wouldn’t] take ‘no’ for an answer and make it happen.”
Delvey, 31, fleeced friends and major banks of hundreds of thousands of dollars before she was convicted in 2019 of fraud and grand theft and sentenced to four to 12 years in prison. After paying her victims, Delvey was briefly released in February 2021 before being arrested by ICE.
A judge ordered her release to house arrest earlier this week after finding that her status “as a public figure” made it difficult for her to avoid detention and a “flight risk [is] adequately mitigated,” according to records obtained by The Daily Beast.
Delvi said Times that he didn’t want to fight the immigration case from Germany because he didn’t want people to think he only cared about “obscene wealth” and that he couldn’t handle a stint in prison.
He added: “… and this is not the reality. I could have left, but I chose not to because I’m trying to fix what I did wrong. I have so much history in New York and I felt like if I was in Europe, I would be running from something. But if prison doesn’t prove people wrong, then what will?” he said.
When asked about how she came up with the money to pay the $10,000 bond and the rent on her East Village apartment — which included three months up front — Delvey simply said times “to ask the government“. She added that the money was hers.
“John [Sandweg]my lawyer found [the apartment] for me. Obviously I couldn’t do anything from prison. I have a great team around me so it was all thanks to them,” he further explained.
As for the benefits of being under house arrest, Delvey said she expects better food and is excited to have visitors after 1:30 p.m. on Thursday.
Delvey also told the Times that she now has a better relationship with her parents and calls them “every other day”. While she’s excited to continue working in art, Delvey said she still has a lot going on and recently worked on a podcast.
“But it’s not set yet. It was very difficult to record anything of high quality from prison,” said Delvey. “And then there’s my book. I would love to do something with criminal justice reform to highlight other girls’ struggles.”
She added that she would not give critics the satisfaction of seeing her fail and warned them not to expect her to do anything “crazy or illegal”.
“I learned so much in prison. There’s a very well documented arc of how I’ve felt about everything. It wouldn’t feel right to change just one day,” Delvey said Times. “I’m sorry for the way things turned out. The way I’ve tried to look at my experience is to learn from it: Who I am today is because of the decisions I made in the past.”
In a ruling earlier this week, Judge Conroy said Delvey had shown “an interest in pursuing lawful employment in the United States, pursuits that will face intense public scrutiny,” which would ultimately reduce her flight risk.
At her trial in 2019, Ms Devey was found guilty of defrauding hotels, banks and other institutions of more than $200,000 (£147,000). She disguised herself as a German heiress to defraud large sums of money from associates and friends.
The story of the Russian-born con artist was dramatized in the Netflix series Inventing Anna. Knowledgeable reported that Netflix paid Delvey $320,000, but her money was frozen and used to pay her victims.