Movie maker Ron Howard and singer Barry Manilow have been named as the losers in a charity guide-dog scam.

The pair were among the celebrities and high-rollers fooled into handing over cash thinking they were helping blind teenagers - but the money was allegedly going straight into the pockets of con-couple BARBARA ABERNATHY and STEVEN SOUTHARD.

The New York couple managed to convince stars to fork out as much as $200,000 (GBP125,000) before their scam was uncovered.

New York state attorney general ELIOT SPITZER says, "These defendants used these charities for their own enrichment. We intend to hold them accountable for their actions."

08/08/2003 17:18