Dot-Com Millionaire Caught Selling Painkillers

By Chrisanne Grise 08/13/12

A co-founder of Live Online faces a long prison sentence after being felled by her addiction to Rx drugs.

Jennifer Sultan in court Photo via

A former dot-com millionaire is charged with selling prescription painkillers to an undercover police officer. Jennifer Sultan—a co-founder of Live Online, a live-streaming website that sold for $70 million back in 2000—was allegedly part of a five-member crime ring. She's also accused of attempting to sell a .357 Magnum to the group's alleged ringleader. A decade ago, Sultan and her boyfriend enjoyed an extravagant lifestyle, owning a $3.1 million loft in New York City and renting an 11-bedroom house in the Hamptons. But when the stock market collapsed in the early 2000s, Sultan lost much of her money, and despite subsequent attempts to start several other businesses, she never found the same level of success. It was during these tribulations that Sultan developed an addiction to pain meds—she was originally prescribed them for back pain that came from playing sports as a child and from a more recent fall in her apartment, according to her lawyer. Although Sultan told a judge she was trying to start a new acupuncture business back in January, she was actually getting involved in drug dealing. In February, a narcotics detective discovered Sultan’s Craigslist ad for prescription painkillers, and arranged a meeting with her. According to her indictment, Sultan sold pills to an undercover officer five times between February and June. A separate investigation into the crime ring discovered a text from Sultan to the purported ringleader, saying she wanted to sell him a .357 Magnum handgun for $850. Now bankrupt, Sultan is unable to raise the $85,000 for her own bail. If convicted, she faces 15 years to life in prison.

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Chrisanne Grise is a multimedia journalist specializing in health/fitness, lifestyle, travel, bridal, and music. Her work has appeared in print and online for publications such as Martha Stewart Weddings, Parents, FitnessMagazine, Fisher Price, Bridal Guide, Scholastic's Choices,,, and more. She is the Senior Editor at The New York Times Upfront. Follow her on Linkedin and Twitter.