Authorities say a Delaware man posed as a celebrity Food Network chef and scammed 300 people out of of money by selling tickets to a star-studded cooking event in New Jersey that does not, in fact, exist. Leonard Ruebeck, 20, allegedly said that chefs including Bobby Flay, Paula Deen and Rachael Ray would make appearances at a "Dinner Impossible BBQ".
He scheduled the bogus event to take place at the local fire station and collected roughly $10,000 in $35 ticket fees from people who wanted to attend. He even attended township meetings with a fake production assistant and sous chef. According to one local resident, Ruebeck pulled off the con "by donning a Food Network chef's jacket and a medallion," which he said he won on Iron Chef. However the resident became suspicious when Ruebeck taught a cooking class and "didn't have any of the basic skills a chef should have." Authorities made him return all the money.
· Police: Man's Claims He Was Staging Food Network Event a Fraud [Today's Sunbeam via BonApp]
· All Previous Food Network Coverage on Eater [-E-]
[Photo: Today's Sunbeam, Image: Food Network]