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Not Content With His One Phone Call

An inmate impersonating Hollywood executives from a jail telephone duped Nextel Communications out of more than 1,000 cell phones for fake movie shoots, prosecutors said Wednesday.

James Sabatino, 25, was charged in federal court with using interstate phone calls from the Westchester County Jail to defraud the cell phone company of more than $1 million.

Prosecutors would not say what Sabatino planned to do with the phones, which were sent to various locations, including a Federal Express pickup facility in Manhattan.

Sabatino's lawyer, Joseph Vita, said he was "not at liberty to discuss the case" Wednesday.

According to the criminal complaint, some of the phones were picked up by a woman who often visited Sabatino in jail. She was charged with taking part in the scheme.

The complaint said Sabatino used the names of Sony Pictures executive Jack Kindberg, Viacom executive Tom Freston and another movie executive, Clive Calder, when he called Nextel to order phones.

Beginning in February, Sabatino made calls to Nextel sales representatives, typically claiming cell phones were needed for a film shoot, the complaint said.

He would give a shipping address, have the bill sent to a real address for Sony and provide the corporation's tax identification, prosecutors said.

Sabatino was jailed after he was convicted of assaulting a federal officer.

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