At first it looked like just another ho-hum EB-5 (immigrant investor) fraud case, a bit of news that we see all too often.
I checked off the similarities: locale, California, check; those indicted, a couple with Chinese names, check; amount involved, about $4 million, check; alien victims, not stated but probably from China, check.
But this case, USA v. Yang et al, has some non-traditional elements, for example.
Some of the phony investments were placed in phony law firms, not real estate;
The couple, once married, did not live together but they did continue to conspire together;
She, Jennifer Yang, seems from the indictment to have been the dominant member; she is represented by a private attorney; he, Daniel Wu, aka, et al., by a federal defender; and
Why someone who has been involved in a multi-million dollar fraud qualifies for a free federal defender is beyond me, but being a criminal often does not equate with being a smart criminal.
The law firms were 81 Law, and 1-855 Lawyers, Inc., both said to be in Palo Alto, Calif. There were also two other paper firms, 81 Doc, Inc., and 81Doc.com, both in Las Vegas. Now, 1-855 is one of those 1-800 numbers; perhaps there is something in Chinese numerology that explains the use of 81.
And perhaps some congressional committee will have a hearing someday to explore why this program is so subject to so much multi-million dollar corruption.
The courts’ electronic filing system, PACER, lists the case as 5:16-cr-00334-LHK.
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