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Anthony Strangis, the Con Man Ex in 'Bad Vegan,' Is Up To His Old Scams Again

By Dustin Rowles | TV | April 15, 2022 |

By Dustin Rowles | TV | April 15, 2022 |


strangis-bad-vegan.png

Anthony Strangis is apparently back on his bullsh*t. The “Where are they now?” page for the scam artist at the center of the Netflix documentary Bad Vegan needs be updated since his release from prison in 2017.

For those who have seen Bad Vegan, you may recall that there is a phone call between Strangis and Sarma Melngailis that frames the documentary (and leaves a “disturbingly misleading” ending, according to Melngailis). There was actually much more to that phone conversation, and Vanity Fair’s Allen Salkin — who profiled Melngailis and Strangis’ relationship in 2016 — managed to get more information on the entire conversation.

What’s surprising about the full conversation is that, in it, Strangis reveals that he knew about the “throuple” photos that would ultimately chase California Congresswoman Katie Hill out of office. In the phone call, Strangis claimed that he was working as a Republican political operative. Late, on the day that Katie Hill resigned, Melngailis expressed her frustration on Twitter with Hill being forced out of office. Strangis texted her.

Strangis: Saw your tweets. Katie Hill had to be removed. Her seat will prove to be important down the line. Powerful people decide things like that. She was a corrupt mess, as are most politicians, but she has a seat that was important to someone for something.

Melngailis: Stop w this kind of shit.

Strangis: What kind of shit do you mean? I was just trying to tell you why she resigned as I saw you tweeting about it.

Melngailis: This bullshit like you know stuff. One day feel free to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you’re not bullshitting or delusional, whilst you shapeshift on a unicorn.

Here’s the twist: In this particular instance, Strangis wasn’t bullshitting or being delusional. The reason why he knew about the photos before they were released is that he had been involved with Jennifer Van Laar, the RedState writer — and now managing editor — who released the photos. In fact, Strangis and Van Laar were secretly married in August 2021.

Van Laar confirmed to Vanity Fair that she and Strangis got married, although the details sound suspiciously similar to the kind of relationship Strangis had with Melngailis.

“I met Anthony Strangis in 2019, and since 2020 he has performed bodyguard services for me,” Van Laar told VF. “As an investigative journalist, I sometimes receive death threats or other threats to my or my family’s safety. I have known about Anthony’s criminal conviction since 2019. In August 2021, when we were both in Las Vegas with friends, on a lark we decided to get married. Once back in California, in our separate homes, we talked for a few weeks about whether it could actually work, but eventually decided that we worked best as just friends.”

Tweets found by Vanity Fair suggest there was more to the relationship — Van Laar was mooning over him in tweets ahead of their Vegas marriage. Van Laar — who uses a different surname in her private life — says that she and Strangis have since divorced, and she claims that he never asked her for money and that they never even had sex. What he did take from her legally, however, was her last name, which allowed Strangis to have a whole new identity.

Sound familiar?

Source: Vanity Fair



Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.



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