Talk about desperate for fame. Wanna-be models and actresses agree to sexual acts and payouts for a chance at making it big.
But, Bakersfield police say the talent scout making those promises is a fake, and they want to find him.
The man's name is Anthony Augustus Jefferson and he's been described as a smooth talker. He's from Bakersfield, but was luring women from the Los Angeles area with promises of making them money and mingling with the stars.
"The victims were contacted by a male subject who identified himself as a talent scout or an employee of major television networks," explained Detective Uriel Pacheco with the Bakersfield Police Department.
Police say Jefferson posted jobs on the internet looking for women to fill positions as personal assistants, models, and actresses.
Jefferson would meet the women in Bakersfield restaurants or, in some cases, hotels, where he'd make the women pay for a room and perform sex acts as part of their audition.
"The information that I've received is that somehow he was able to convince them to use their personal credit card or to perform sexual acts under the false pretense of employment," said Det. Pacheco.
17 News showed Jefferson's photo to former Vindictive Entertainment promoter, Myron Ward, who was in charge of a spring break event at Stramler Park nearly eight years ago. Ward says Jefferson pretended to be another promoter and talked his way into the event.
"He told them he was part of the staff and they should give me the money, so they gave him the cash box and he took off," explained Ward.
Ward says Jefferson got away with over $12,000. But, the production company filed an insurance claim rather than going to police.
Currently, a warrant is out for Jefferson for sexual battery by false pretense, false impersonation, indecent exposure, and petty theft.
"That's because he's not legitimate, and he doesn't have an office. Hello!," said Ann McCright, owner of McCright Agency in Bakersfield.
17 News spoke with McCright about what those seeking a job in the talent industry should look for.
"Don't go pay a scout or a talent agent or a manager as far as that goes. It's illegal for them to charge to represent you," said McCright.
McCright says budding stars should only pay if they are getting services such as training or photos.
"I want to tell the young people not to be so desperate to go to someone like this. First of all, he doesn't look the part," said McCright. "I mean the minute he wants to go to a hotel or meet you at a restaurant or any place like that, that means he's not legitimate. He doesn't have an office, and I would take myself and run."
17 News learned Jefferson has a criminal record including battery, drug possession, and bouncing checks.
Bakersfield police did not say how many victims there are in this scam, and they aren't sure if Jefferson is still in the Bakersfield area. But, they say additional charges are pending in this case.
They encourage you to contact the department if you are a victim or know where Jefferson is. The number is 327-7111.