NEW YORK (AP) – A yearslong saga that ensnared the publishing world has culminated in a New York courtroom where a con artist has pleaded guilty to a plot defrauding scores of authors by duping them into handing over hundreds of unpublished manuscripts.

Filippo Bernardini, an Italian citizen who had been working in publishing in London, pleaded guilty to a single count of wire fraud in connection with a phishing scheme that had baffled the book world for years.

He used email accounts to impersonate literary agents and editors to con authors of their manuscripts.

The announcement was made by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

Bernardini is set to be sentenced April 5.