Immigration Lawyers Justin Moongyu Lee and Rebecca Taewon Lee Allegedly Scammed Foreign Investors Seeking U.S. Residency
Justin Moongyu Lee, a Los Angeles-based immigration attorney, his wife, Rebecca Taewon Lee, and law firm partner, Thomas Edward Kent, conducted an investment scheme to defraud foreign investors attempting to come to the U.S. through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, which gives immigrants an opportunity to apply for a two-year U.S. residency by investing at least $500,000 in a domestic project to create jobs for U.S. workers, the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) alleges. The SEC further alleges that the Lees and Kent raised nearly $11.5 million from almost twenty five investors looking to participate in the EB-5 program.
The Lees and Kent Advertised Potential Investment in Kansas Ethanol Plant
The Lees and Kent told investors, predominately of Chinese and Korean extraction, that they would be eligible for EB-5 visas if they invested in an ethanol production plant they planned to build and operate in Ulysses, Kansas. In reality, the Lees and Kent misappropriated the money for other uses, rather than the ethanol plant project, the SEC reports. The plant’s construction never came to fruition, nor were the aforementioned promised jobs created, but “the Lees and Kent continued to misrepresent to investors that the project was ongoing,” the SEC reports. According to the SEC’s complaint, Justin Lee and Kent applied to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in 2006 for designation as a “regional center” under the EB-5 program, with the presupposition that there would be major economic benefit and job growth for Southwest Kansas. By mid-2008, however, the SEC reports, the ethanol plant at the site was no longer economically viable, but investors continued to be duped as late as June 2010. At this point, the SEC further alleges, the business plan was updated and distributed to investors and it was falsely represented that construction was “ongoing” and the plant would be in operation before November 2011.
Investment Fraud Lawyers Investigating
The Peiffer Wolf Carr & Kane securities attorneys often represent investors who lose money as a result of investment fraud, and they are currently investigating the Lees and Kent, and the possibility of assisting victims with the recovery of their losses. They take most cases of this type on a contingency fee basis and advance the case costs, and only get paid for their fees and costs out of money they recover for their clients.
Investors who believe they lost money as a result of investment fraud or misconduct may contact the securities lawyers at Peiffer Wolf Carr & Kane, Jason Kane or Joe Peiffer, for a free, no-obligation evaluation of their recovery options, at (585) 310-5140.