The EB-5 visa program provides an opportunity for those foreign investors with enough capital the chance to apply for the coveted green card that may otherwise be unattainable due to immigration quotas imposed on selected nations. Unfortunately, not every investment project comes to fruition, and investors discover that they have been victims of EB-5 fraud. While many New York projects have delivered the sought-after results, there are other investors who may fear that they have been misled.
One man is now facing a civil suit filed against him by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The suit, which was filed in the latter part of last year, alleges that the man, who operated a consulting firm and solicited funds for the EB-5 visa, defrauded investors of more than $9.5 million. The monies were purportedly earmarked for various development projects on the west coast.
Instead of the promised projects, however, the investments were allegedly used to purchase personal luxury items such as a yacht and a membership to a boating club. According to signs that were erected years ago, a popular restaurant chain in the local area was planning to open another location in a mixed-use building based on the investments with this consulting company. However, the project has now been cancelled.
While one of the eatery's locations has closed due to the man's frozen accounts, there are other locations that remain open for business. It is unknown whether the investments into these failed projects will be recovered by the more than 130 foreign investors. New York investors who fear that they have also been victims of EB-5 fraud do have the right to consult with an experienced attorney who is well-versed in how to protect those who have invested in this visa program.
Source: therealdeal.com, "Caffe Primo CEO charged with EB-5 fraud, scraps LA expansion plans", Aug. 1, 2017