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Former Rock Musician On South Coast Sentence To Federal Prison For Housing Fraud Scheme

The former bass guitar player for a Santa Barbara based punk rock band is headed to federal prison after being convicted of a fraud scheme targeting renters and would-be home buyers.

Federal prosecutors say Michael Davenport of Santa Barbara ran a business called “American Standard” which posted online ads for low cost rental units, or homes for sale which didn’t exist. 

The business then charged victims a $199 fee to access a list of the homes. 

After people bought the list, they discovered the homes weren’t available, or sometimes didn’t even exist.  Prosecutors say American Standard defrauded more than 130,000 people, and in effect stole about $25 million dollars. 

Davenport pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.  He’s been sentenced to seven years in federal prison, and ordered to forfeit more than $900,000.  Four former American Standard employees were also charged in connection with the scheme.

Davenport played in the punk rock band “The Ataris” for more than a decade.