Arcadia woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for defrauding millions of dollars into targeting investors in the Coachella Valley development |  USAO-CDCA

Arcadia woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for defrauding millions of dollars into targeting investors in the Coachella Valley development | USAO-CDCA

Los Angeles – A San Gabriel Valley lady was sentenced to 240 months in jail immediately for inflicting tens of tens of millions of {dollars} in losses to buyers who supplied funds earmarked for a lodge and house complicated within the Coachella Valley, after which used the funds to fund their lavish financing. life-style.

Ruexo “Serena” Shea, 38, of Arcadia, was sentenced by US District Choose R. Gary Klausner, who additionally ordered her to pay $35,842,329 in damages.

Shi pleaded responsible in October 2021 to a wire fraud cost. Shi has been in federal custody since August 2020 after legislation enforcement found she was researching methods to flee the US utilizing a forbidden iPhone whereas she was free on bail on this legal case.

At immediately’s sentencing listening to, after Shi tried to withdraw her responsible plea, Choose Klausner stated, “There was no admission of accountability; there was a denial of accountability.”

From November 2015 to July 2018, Shi was the final supervisor of International Home Purchaser LLC (GHB), an actual property firm primarily based in China with an workplace in Los Angeles. Shi reached an settlement with Dakota Developments, an actual property growth subsidiary of Los Angeles-based hospitality firm SBE Leisure, to construct an actual property mission in Coachella beneath SBE’s model identify “Hyde.” Hyde Resorts was to be a 207-unit luxurious lodge and condominium complicated with 95,000 sq. toes of convention amenities, a pool, spa, health heart, and different facilities.

Xi solicited investments within the Hyde complicated from the victims, principally Chinese language buyers, by making gross sales pitches in inns and contacting the victims by way of WeChat, a Chinese language messaging, social media and cell fee app.

To get the victims to spend money on the Hyde complicated, Shea wrongly tells them that their cash will solely be used to fund the Hyde growth. In truth, Xi used a lot of the victims’ cash for her private bills, together with spending practically $300,000 to purchase two luxurious vehicles, spending practically $2.2 million on a luxurious journey and concierge service firm, and spending practically $800,000 on Victims’ cash in a full-service design company in Beverly Hills, in addition to lots of of hundreds of {dollars} in victims’ cash getting used on high-end clothes designers, eating places, and different shops.

In reference to the sentencing listening to, greater than twenty victims submitted statements to the courtroom, a lot of whom described the numerous monetary hardship they skilled. Many mentioned their reliance on Xi’s false guarantees that their investments would assist them get hold of visas to immigrate to the US. One sufferer even wrote that after shedding his retirement financial savings to Xi’s scheme, he “even contemplated suicide,” in line with courtroom papers filed by prosecutors.

The federal government argued in sentencing papers that the victims misplaced at the least $26,185,634 investing in Shea’s fraud scheme, however the precise quantity might be a lot greater.

Within the sentencing notice, prosecutors argued: “She largely focused her personal Chinese language nationals… Xi exploited her victims’ hopes for a greater life.” It exploited its victims’ ignorance of the English language and their confidence within the well being of the American economic system. and its victims undergo bodily smash and psychological struggling, [Shi] They had been dwelling off huge cash from their investments.”

The FBI investigated this matter.

Assistant United States Legal professional Alexander B. Schwab from the foremost fraud division this case.

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