COOPERSTOWN – Victoria Pressley, the Cherry Valley modeling agent who was charged with fraud after a model claimed Pressly never booked any of the promised shoots, has agreed to pay back the $4,300 fee she charged a client, according to District Attorney John Muehl.
“It was an interesting case,” he said. “But with the courts not yet open, I had to triage it.”
I am writing on behalf of Victoria Pressly, who has been a friend of mine for the past 10 years.
If I had to think of one word to describe Victoria, it would be “passionate.” She is passionate about life. She is passionate about her family. She is passionate about her clients and career.
Victoria’s career has required a significant amount of travel, and yet when I think of her, I think of the mom who is at every soccer game, school play and concert. She not only cares deeply about her children, she is incredibly supportive and involved in their lives.
Victoria is also dedicated to her clients. Living in Upstate New York, there are many challenges that must be overcome to build a thriving career, and yet Victoria managed to do just that while raising a family. I have often heard her speak about her clients with both the fierce determination to help them succeed and the protectiveness of a mother hen. It has always been obvious that she cares deeply.
My children and Victoria’s children are similar in age so I understand fully the time and emotional commitment involved in being a mother. I also work full time and know the challenges of managing family and career. Victoria has always impressed me with her ability to not only manage, but thrive and remain passionate about both.
I have known Victoria Pressly since July 2012. She was professionally known as Victoria Talbot back then. She was recommended to me by my former acting agent Noel Palm. He told me if I hire her she would get me a lot of good press which would help advance my career in showbiz. I was on a prime time NBC show called “Stars Earn Stripes” and wanted to capitalize on the notoriety the TV series was garnering.
I subsequently hired Victoria and she did in fact get me a lot of great press, including the cover of Millennium magazine, “Fox and Friends” twice, Sirius XM national radio tour, Channel 12 News interview, and several high-profile photo shoots with expensive photographers such as Jim Malucci who were for free for me since I paid Victoria $1,500 and she was friends with him. Jim is Miami-based and usually charges $7,500 a shoot and does various covers.
From the moment I met Victoria Talbot Pressly she proved she was a serious connector whose impressive Rolodex has played an integral part in the growth and sustainability of Millennium Magazine.
I met Vicky while standing in line for drinks at a doctor’s summer penthouse party on Manhattan’s Eastside in 2011. She was standing in front of me when I stepped up and she turned around to say, “Hi,” and introduced herself. She told me she was a publicist and I told her that I was a magazine publisher and that we should talk.
Minutes later she introduced me to her friend Lauren, who covered the Hamptons for another magazine out East. I welcomed her to join my venture, and Vicky’s friend proved to be such an outstanding contributor to Millennium I later made her editor at large.
CHERRY VALLEY – Victoria Pressly’s agency promised models and actors all over the country she could get them into magazines and onto the red carpet, said Otsego County District Attorney John Muehl.
But it wasn’t always so, he said.
“She talks a good game, holds herself out as someone who has connections and can get models and actors onto the red carpet, exclusive events, photo shoots and interviews,” said Muehl. “But the complaint is she gets the retainer up front and doesn’t do anything.”
Pressly, 53, owner of Victoria Pressly PR Celebrity Agency and HYPEPRnow in Cherry Valley, was arrested and charged with Grand Larceny, third degree, and Scheme to Defraud, first degree, following an investigation by the District Attorney’s office.
According to the complaint, between Nov. 5, 2018, and Jan. 15, 2019, Pressly “did steal property valued in excess of $3,000.”
According to Muehl, aspiring models paid her a retainer with the understanding that she would be able to book them for photo shoots, red carpet appearances and interviews in national publications.
“She advertised herself as a PR person,” he said.
However, the clients alleged that she never delivered on any of the promised services, and when they complained, she blocked them on social media and stopped returning calls.
Emmy Adams, the 2016 Miss Nevada, claimed she was one of Pressly’s scammed clients in a post on her Facebook page Tuesday afternoon.
“Being new to Hollywood, this woman told me she could elevate my career but instead she SCAMMED me and has been scamming other models and actresses for thousands and thousands of dollars!!!” she wrote. “She scammed me out of $4,300!!!”
She also encouraged victims to share the post and report their experiences with Pressly. “She has been getting away with this for 20+ years and it’s time for her to stop.”
Pressly was also charged with scheming to defraud clients, with the indictment alleging that she “did engage in a scheme constituting a systematic ongoing course of conduct…by false or fraudulent pretenses, representations or promises.”
At present, Muehl said, she is being charged with taking $4,500 from clients without booking them any of the promised promotional appearances.
Muehl said “several” of the clients have already come forward.
COOPERSTOWN – A Cherry Valley woman was charged with fraud after several out-of-state models claimed they paid her to help them book photo shoots and interviews, but never received any of the services promised.
Victoria Pressly, 53, owner of Victoria Pressly PR Celebrity Agency, was indicted and charged with Grand Larceny, third degree and Scheme to Defraud, first degree, following an investigation by the Otsego County District Attorney’s office.