$68 Million Ponzi|Is Over, SEC Says

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – Luca International Group and its CEO targeted Chinese-Americans in a $68 million Ponzi scheme and visa fraud, the SEC claims in court.
     The SEC sued Luca International, its CEO Bingqing Yang and a host of other alleged oil and gas entrepreneurs on Monday in Federal Court.
     “Bingqing Yang knew that Luca International Group was earning no profits and sinking under a mountain of debt, yet she made presentations to investors portraying a successful oil and gas operation with millions of barrels of oil reserves and billions of cubic feet in gas reserves,” the SEC said in a statement.
     She promised annual returns of 20 to 30 percent, which she paid, if at all, from new suckers, and squirreled $2.4 million through her brother’s company in Hong Kong and bought herself a nice 5,600-square-foot home in gated community in Fremont with it, the SEC says. Also on a pool man, gardeners, her personal taxes and a trip to Hawaii, allegedly.
     She swiped $8 million by claiming she could get overseas Chinese people investors’ visas through the EB-5 program, the SEC says.
     Defendants include Luca’s vice president Lei (Lily)Lei; Luca’s former CFO Anthony Pollace; and Yong (Michael) Chen and his company Entholpy EMC dba Mastermind College Funding Group.

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