EB-5 Scandals Finally Reach Hawaii

By David North on March 5, 2020

It had to happen. A family with Chinese roots was charged with scamming six Asian EB-5 investors. Nothing new there — except the location.

The promised projects that were never built were in Hawaii; I do not recall prior EB-5 scandals in that state.

Six investors from China, Japan, and Korea charged Zhong Fang (a.k.a. Johnson Fang) with securing $500,000 investments from them with promises to put the money into high-rises that never rose.

According to a Law360 report (behind a partial paywall), "The advertisements promoted Hawaii City Plaza as the 'ONLY' EB-5 project in Honolulu." (Emphasis in the original.)

This is a civil suit, entitled Jiang v. Fang, filed in the U.S. District Court for Hawaii, with the case number 1:20-cv-00100. The EB-5 program offers alien investors a family-sized set of green cards if they invest in a DHS-designated — but not guaranteed — project. At the time these six put up the money, the minimum investment was $500,000; that number was since grown to $900,000.