Anna Sorokin: Real-life ‘Inventing Anna’ released from jail
Anna Sorokin, the fake heiress Netflix’s “Inventing Anna” is based on, was released from ICE detention on Friday.
Juda Engelmayer, a spokesman for Sorokin, confirmed her release in an email to CNN Friday night.
“She will remain under the supervision of ICE, but will be able to fight her deportation free from physical custody,” said John Sandweg, a former acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement who’s on Sorokin’s legal team.
Immigration Judge Charles Conroy cleared the way for Sorokin’s release earlier this week, setting her bond at $10,000 and requiring her to follow certain conditions. Among them: staying off social media and remaining at the same residential address 24 hours a day while her case proceeds.
The judge’s ruling also said ICE may use an ankle monitor to keep tabs on Sorokin.
A spokesman for ICE said Sorokin was being released Friday after the judge’s ruling.
She’d been in ICE detention for 17 months, according to her attorney – mostly at the Orange County Correctional Facility in upstate New York, about 60 miles from New York City.
“We are grateful that the Court agreed that her continued detention is unnecessary,” Sandweg said in a statement Friday.
Sorokin was found guilty of stealing more than $200,000 from banks and friends while scamming her way into New York society, the Manhattan District Attorney said after her 2019 conviction.
Her case drew widespread attention after a 2018 New York magazine article.
That article became the basis of Shonda Rhimes’ “Inventing Anna,” a dramatization that released on Netflix in February and quickly became one of the streamer’s most popular shows. Actress Julia Garner, best known for her Emmy-winning role as Ruth on “Ozark,” played Sorokin.
The show ends with Sorokin’s conviction. But in real life, the drama has continued.
Sorokin was released from jail in February 2021 after serving nearly four years on theft and larceny charges. But it wasn’t long before she ended up back behind bars.
ICE took custody of Sorokin on March 25, 2021. In November, the Board of Immigration Appeals granted an emergency stay in her case, according to ICE. She’s been fighting her deportation – and also joined a group of plaintiffs suing the agency earlier this year, alleging they’d requested and been denied Covid booster shots while in custody. They dropped their lawsuit in March after receiving the shots, according to court records.
While she’s been detained, frequent posts have been made on Sorokin’s social media accounts. Recently they’ve highlighted Sorokin’s artwork, which was featured in a New York show in May.
Earlier this year an attorney representing Sorokin told NBC News that he feared her deportation when he couldn’t reach her, but word later emerged that she was still in ICE custody.
Soon afterward, Sorokin spoke out from behind bars, telling the “Call Her Daddy” podcast that she never claimed to be a German heiress.
“I was from Germany, which was true, but nobody ever asked me about my job,” Sorokin said. “Nobody asks who are your parents and how much money do they make. It’s just outrageous.”
She told host Alex Cooper that she never “told any senseless lies.”
But she admitted – sort of – to lying about her status and background.
“I guess I did,” she said. “I mean, I cannot tell an exact instance, but I’m sure.”
Sorokin also said she was surprised by the public’s fascination with her story.
“It was just really a surprise to me that people would be, like, so interested in the way I went about the things, because it just made so much sense to me,” she said.