A convicted white collar fraudster has been accused of going too far in investigating the mysterious death of his 20-year-old daughter.
Vladislav ‘Steven’ Zubkis has a long history of money-making schemes that have landed him in the pages of Fortune and the Wall Street Journal, and even a prison cell.
But it was the bi-polar former Wall Street stock broker’s obsessive search for the truth in the death of his daughter two years ago that got him in trouble with the law again.
Vladislav ‘Steven’ Zubvkis is accused of kidnapping and beating up a man he believed might have information on the May 2015 death of his daughter Victoria, 20
According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, Zubkis’ 20-year-old daughter Victoria’s body was found floating off Ocean Beach, California on May 28, 2015.
While her exact cause of death was undetermined, police believe she died of either a suicide or an accident, since there were no signs of foul play on her body.
Zubkis didn’t buy the police opinion on the case, and decided to launch a little investigation of his own, offering $1million on Facebook for information on Victoria’s death.
On June 5, 2015, Jorge Ibarra took three hits of LSD and went out for a walk in Ocean Beach. The man ran into a group of people discussing Victoria’s death, including Ceasar Mena.
Victoria Zubkis’ dead body was found floating off Ocean Beach, California on May 28, 2015. Police believe she died of a suicide or an accident, since there were no signs of foul play on her body. However, her dad didn’t believe that and decided to offer a $1million reward on Facebook for information on her death
Mena claimed to have been dating Victoria at the time of her death, and said that Zubkis had hired him as a private investigator.
When asked about the last time he saw Victoria, Ibarra said she had been ‘really high on drugs’ and that her ex-boyfriend had kicked her out of her apartment for allegedly stealing from a friend.
Those comments landed Ibarra in the back of a car where Mena and others proceeded to beat him up, he claimed.
Mena then drove him across the border into Mexico, taking him to the Rosarito residential community where Zubkis was living.
For the next several hours, Ibarra says Mena and Zubkis interrogated him for more information, beating him with his skateboard and with a wooden table or chair leg. He says Zubkis also kicked him.
At one point, Ibarra broke Mena’s necklace and he said that sparked the man’s anger.
He said Mena told him ‘Iba a vivir’ which means ‘I was going to let you live’.
He then says that the men found five hits of acid in his pocket and made him take it.
Zubkis (pictured above with his daughter) stands accused of orchestrating the kidnapping of a man who believed had information on his daughter’s death. That man was brought to Mexico for him, where he allegedly beat him up during an interrogation
The men made so much noise that someone in the community called security, who in turn called the police around 2:30am.
When police arrived at the apartment, Zubkis answered the door and said everything was fine.
But one of the officers spotted vomit on the floor so they came in. Mena then tried to flee but one of the officers chased him and arrested him.
They found Ibarra tied up and hidden underneath a comforter. Zubkis was also arrested and Ibarra was taken to the hospital.
Zubkis has remained free on bail in Mexico, but the others involved in Ibarra’s kidnapping have faced trial in the U.S.
The first trial ended in a hung jury but the second trial found Mena guilty of kidnapping, torture and assault with a deadly weapon.
Despite his most recent arrest, Zubkis appears to have continued with his white collar schemes.
In August 2016, he made headlines again when he started a new company, NeuroMama, despite a court order that he not serve as an officer on the board of a public company.
Zubkis was arrested for beating up the American man in connection with his daughter’s death. Since then though, he has tried to set up a new business, Neuro Mama, which has raised suspicions with the SEC
Zubkis tried to get around that order, by going under the alias of Steven Schwartzbad.
The company billed itself as an Internet search engine ‘based on Artificial Intelligence and Neural technology’ as well as a social media network, a developer of ion fusion energy and a resort builder.
The SEC put a 10-day freeze on trading for the company, because it was suspicious that the company had grown to $35billion in such a short time.
Since the SEC has lifted the freeze, the company has not participated in any significant trading.
Zubkis is still awaiting trial for his role in the kidnapping of Ibarra.