Con man swindled NBA stars of sneakers by posing as Adele’s manager, police say

Justin Jackson
Justin Jackson Miami-Dade Corrections

Two months ago, police arrested a notorious South Florida con man on accusations that he impersonated the manager of singer Adele to try to get tickets to a Miami hip-hop concert.

But his scam targeted a host of other sports stars and celebrities over the years, prosecutors said Tuesday in filing new criminal charges against Justin Jackson and his wife.

According to an arrest warrant filed Tuesday, Jackson used email to pose as Adele’s manager when he:

▪  Offered Adele concert tickets in exchange for sneakers from basketball players Carmelo Anthony, Russell Westbrook and Bismack Biyombo, among others, purportedly for an auction to benefit charities. He succeeded in getting sneakers shipped to him from NBA stars Paul George, Victor Oladipo and Richard Hamilton.

▪  Created a fake email for the manager of soccer superstar Lionel Messi, in an effort to “add a layer of verisimilitude” to his request to get sneakers from NBA stars.

▪  Asked representatives for music stars Chris Brown, Tory Lanez and Katy Perry if the singers would make birthday videos for a “dear friend.” The requests didn’t work.

▪  Got tickets to attend — and go backstage — at a concert for the rapper Fabolous. He also tried, apparently unsuccessfully, to get tickets to attend shows by Lauryn Hill and Carrie Underwood.

Jackson and his wife, Angel Lii, were charged Tuesday with more than a dozen new felonies, including counts of identity theft and organized scheme to defraud. They were booked into jail on Tuesday afternoon, and their lawyers could not immediately be reached for comment.

The pair was originally arrested in May for allegedly posing as Adele’s manager, Jonathan Dickins. Miami-Dade police said the two tried to get comped tickets to see rapper Kendrick Lamar at Miami’s Rolling Loud hip-hop festival on May 6.

Miami-Dade cyber crimes detective Steven Kaufman, posing as a production manager, set up a sting, telling Jackson he could pick up the passes on Saturday at Bayfront Park, according to an arrest report.

On the phone, Jackson told the detective that he was an assistant for Dickins who was “working with his important clients all day.” Jackson, his wife and another woman showed up at Bayfront and picked up the passes. They were immediately detained by police and now face grand theft and identity theft charges. The third person with them, a woman named Hayle Henegar, was not arrested.

Jackson, 30, and his wife tried destroying their phones, according to an arrest warrant by Kaufman and prosecutor Stewart Hendrick.

This is not the first time Jackson has been accused of impersonating celebrity reps.

Jackson served two years in Florida prison after posing as a rep for pop star Madonna, persuading a New York boutique to loan out $2.4 million worth of jewelry in 2007. He later sold the jewelry to a South Florida pawnshop.

He was put on probation after serving his prison time.

Then in 2014, Jackson was sued in South Florida federal court on allegations that he posed as Oprah Winfrey’s nephew, execs from her cable television network and a former aide for President Barack Obama, all in attempts to get free stuff.