Monday, May 23, 2011


New York lawyer Marc Dreier's massive fraud came unravelled in, of all places, Toronto.  

Dreier craved the high life.  Sponsoring big charity events was his ticket to hobnobbing with the rich and famous.  Alas, his law firm could not support this style. 

So Dreier orchestrated a fraud scheme, starting with paper forgeries and escalating to brazen impersonations.  His final, unsuccessful, impersonation at the Ontario Teachers Pension Fund led to his exposure and arrest.

Dreier was granted bail while he was awaiting sentencing.  Unraveled follows the unrepentant Dreier during that month, at his luxurious New York penthouse.  In his discussions with his lawyer, he forcefully argues that his wasn't such a horrible crime (especially in comparison with Bernie Madoff) and he should be granted a short sentence, close to New York so his kids can visit him.  Although he shows a stunning lack of remorse for his crime, he claims to regret the damage to his family.  But his interactions with his son wouldn't support his claim of a warm relationship.

This Hot Docs movie was a very interesting character study.  While Dreier wasn't a sympathetic character, it was fascinating to see his attempts to minimize his crime and shift the blame to events like his divorce.

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