‘China City’ EB-5 Promoters Arrested – a Project Exposed by CIS Eight Years Ago

By David North on July 20, 2022

An elaborate EB-5 scheme to build either an all-Chinese community “China City”, or a for-profit educational center in the same pristine spot in New York’s Catskills — exposed by CIS back in December 2013 — has gotten its two promoters arrested.

A Washington Post article on the subject stated:

With promises of green cards and access to prominent U.S. politicians — including then-President Donald Trump — two New Yorkers enticed Chinese [EB-5] investors into giving them millions, filtering the foreign money into American political campaigns, all while skimming the funds to support their luxurious lifestyles, federal prosecutors said on Monday.

We described most of the scheme in detail more than eight years ago. The use of money from Chinese investors to support the Trump campaign — it is illegal for aliens to donate to U.S. political campaigns — came later. Sherry Li used those contributions to get herself photographed with Mr. and Mrs.Trump. She also funneled major campaign contributions to aid then N.Y. Governor Andrew Cuomo (D), hence supporting one defeated politician and one deposed one.

She and her partner in these schemes, another naturalized citizen, Lianbo “Mike” Wang, both of Oyster Bay, Long Island, were popped into jail by federal authorities; bail arrangements may be worked out later. The Post story continues:

In one instance they charged 12 non-U.S. citizens $93,000 per person, a haul of more than $1 million, to attend a June 2017 Trump fundraiser, before illegally donating $600,000 to the fundraising committee, the Justice Department alleged.

I did a little math and found that $93,000 times 12 equals $1,116,000 and that this sum minus $600,000 equals $516,000, which would seem to indicate that the couple pocketed that sum rather than it going to the Trump campaign. So these EB-5 promoters gouged both the rich Chinese and the president of the United States, an angle not mentioned by the Post.

None of the investors ever saw a green card or presumably got their money back. A total of $27 million was raised fraudulently from a mix of EB-5 and other investors. None of the EB-5 money was spent on either land or construction.

Why it took the feds so long to bring charges is not explained. If the case goes to trial — rather than winding up with a plea deal — we can look forward to more lurid details in the years to come.