Man who impersonated dad in Maxim magazine bid gets prison

NEW YORK, N.Y. – A man who impersonated his successful father in a bid to buy Maxim magazine was sentenced Monday to a year in prison after co-operating with authorities.

Calvin Darden Jr., the son of a former UPS executive, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff, who said Darden had great intelligence and abilities but “has spent too much of his life engaged in fraud or other wrongdoing.”

The judge said he could understand optimism that Darden was turning his life around but “the past is not a pretty picture.”

Darden apologized, saying his crime was “beyond embarrassing.”

“I’m sorry, embarrassed, ashamed,” he told the judge.

He said the crime “tore my family apart” as he stained a name that his father had spent his life building up.

Authorities say the Staten Island man tricked two lenders in late 2013 into providing more than $8 million in financing for the potential acquisition of Maxim magazine and tried to defraud another victim of $20 million. The government said the conspiracy stretched from August 2013 through February 2014.

The judge ordered more than $4 million in restitution. He said he might have required Darden spend as much as five years in prison were it not for Darden’s substantial co-operation.

In November 2014, Darden pleaded guilty in the case after authorities said he impersonated his prominent father, a former senior vice-president for operations at Atlanta-based United Parcel Service Inc. in his bid to buy Maxim, a men’s lifestyle magazine that features photos of scantily clad models. The elder Darden also sits on the board of several major corporations.

A lawyer who helped Darden was earlier sentenced to six months in prison.

Nearly a decade ago, Darden pleaded guilty in a scam that cost investors millions of dollars and was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison and ordered to repay nearly $6 million.