DOCUMENT: Stupid, Crime

Cops: Fraudster Posed As Member Of Nickelback

Man tried to swindle 25k worth of microphones

View Document

Nickelback Fraud

MARCH 1--In a deeply embarrassing fraud scheme, a Florida man actually posed as the drummer for Nickelback in a bid to swindle a company out of $25,000 worth of high-end microphones, according to police.

Investigators allege that Lee Koenig, 45, masqueraded as Nickelback drummer Daniel Adair when recently placing an e-mail order with Lewitt Audio, a Vienna, Austria firm.

The order was subsequently flagged by a Nickelback business representative as “out of the ordinary,” a police report notes. When the rep contacted Adair, the drummer “stated that he did not make the order and began to look into who had.”

Adair’s sleuthing led him to Facebook pages and a web site for Koenig, who has drummed in a series of bands, including Billy Idol and Aerosmith tribute outfits. One of Koenig’s Facebook pages describes him as a “Hall of fame drummer, Sony Multi platinum session touring drummer.”

Upon examining online photos, the 42-year-old Adair “realized that the suspect’s drum set was the same configuration as his.” Adair also determined that the purported Nickelback publicist named in the e-mail order was actually Koenig’s girlfriend.

Cops yesterday executed a search warrant at Koenig’s Port St. Lucie home, during which he acknowledged writing the e-mail to the Austrian firm and posing as Adair. "The defendant stated that he wanted to apologize to the victim for using his name and wanted to write him a letter," police reported. But when a cop asked Koenig--who is nicknamed “Wooky”--about “other groups” he may have defrauded, the suspect “invoked his rights to have a lawyer present.”

Koenig was arrested on two felony fraud counts and booked into the county jail (from which he was later released after posting $18,750 bond).

Court records show that Koenig is a convicted felon who served more than two years in state prison following a 2009 fraud conviction. Koenig was collared after illegally pocketing nearly $100,000 raised during charity concert schemes.

Koenig last performed February 18 at the Manatee Island Bar and Grill in Port Salerno. Adair (seen at left) and his Nickelback bandmates begin a 44-date North American tour in late-June. The Canadian quartet is touring in support of “Feed The Machine,” its ninth studio production. The band’s web site promises that the album’s title cut is “a defiant rock anthem featuring blistering guitar riffs and face-melting rhythm tracks.” (2 pages)