Part-time Huntington Beach actor found guilty of soliciting investments for phony COVID-19 cure

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A part-time actor from Huntington Beach who in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic had fraudulently touted a cure and treatment for the virus was found guilty by jury Friday, May 10, of 11 counts of wire fraud for soliciting investors for his bogus treatments, federal authorities said.

Keith Lawrence Middlebrook, 56, faces a potential maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison, U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesman Ciaran McEvoy said. His sentencing was scheduled for Sept. 9.

Middlebrook was arrested by FBI agents in El Segundo after he delivered bogus pills to an undercover agent posing as an investor in March 2020, but was released less than two months later after posting $150,000 bond, federal authorities said. He remained out of custody Friday.

During the pandemic’s early days, Middlebrook solicited potential investors in California, Nevada, New York, Texas and Colorado through text messages and videos posted on YouTube and Instagram touting a purported cure for COVID-19 that was “patent-pending,” which he called “QC20,” along with a purported treatment called “QP20,” McEvoy said.

Middlebrook claimed to have personally developed the cure and treatment to prevent coronavirus infection, McEvoy said. He solicited investments in his companies – called Quantum Prevention CV Inc. and Quantum Cure CV 2020 Inc. – with a series of false promises, including “miraculous results from the prevention product and the cure,” and “risk-free and 100 percent guaranteed ‘enormous returns’ on investments.”

He also falsely said that Earvin “Magic” Johnson was a director and officer of Middlebrook’s companies.

Middlebrook also lied and claimed a party in Dubai had offered to purchase his companies for $10 billion and that this offer would secure the investments and in telling potential investors that seven others had already invested between $750,00 and $1 million, McEvoy said.

Middlebrook’s screen credits include Moneyball and Iron Man 2.