NYC man sentenced to prison for defrauding Wisconsin residents in professional sports ticket scam


Nikhil S. Mahtani, 28, of New York City was sentenced in Wisconsin to 15 months in federal prison for wire fraud. Mahtani is estimated to have received approximately $120,000 from over 100 victims in Wisconsin and across the United States.

Gregory J. Haanstad, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, announced Mahtani’s sentencing on June 12, 2024.

According to court documents, between approximately January 4, 2019, and December 11, 2022, Mahtani placed over one thousand ads on Craigslist offering high-end tickets and luxury box suites to National Football League (NFL), National Basketball Association (NBA), and other professional sporting events around the country, a press release from the Justice Department said.

Numerous individuals throughout the Eastern District of Wisconsin were victimized by Mahtani, who accepted thousands of dollars in payments for tickets and suites he knew were not legitimate.

In one instance, cited in the press release, a large group of friends and family members showed up at Fiserv Forum the night the Milwaukee Bucks won the NBA Championship in 2021, only to be turned away and told they had been scammed.

At the sentencing hearing, Senior United States District Judge William C. Griesbach noted the serious nature of the crime and the need to deter the defendant and others from engaging in this type of fraud. He rejected Mahtani’s request for probation noting that this was not a “crime of impulse,” but rather a “systematic victimization” of sports fans who had their hearts set on attending a variety of professional sporting events including Green Bay Packers and Milwaukee Bucks games.

Mahtani will spend 15 months in prison and was ordered to pay $88,000 in restitution to his victims. He will also spend three years on supervised release.

This case was investigated by the New York Police Department Financial Crimes Task Force, Homeland Security Investigations, and the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office.



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