|Former Arcadia Mayor Johnny "GemCoins" Wuo|
At this point, there is no indication there was any legitimate Gemcoin or other viable business operated by (USFIA).
Aside from some income generated by the hotel and rental properties, (USFIA) had no significant source of income other than money raised from investors. The Receiver has verified that virtually none of the assets described in online and written marketing materials actually exist.
Instead of mines located around the world, millions of dollars in precious gems, and houses and cars available to be awarded to investors, the Receiver has found only costume jewelry, boxes of rocks, and bins filled with tens of thousands of little rings of nominal value.
Some questions that remain for us here at The Tattler are how did a ponzi scheme of this magnitude, and with the quite public participation of longtime Councilmember and former Mayor John Wuo, remain undetected for so long by the richly compensated law enforcement apparatus of the City of Arcadia? Did Arcadia function as a safe haven for an international crime syndicate whose sole source of income was defrauding vulnerable Chinese immigrant investors of their life savings?
This one as well. Did the city turn a blind eye to all of this because of USFIA head Steve Chen's close financial and personal ties to former three term Mayor and sitting Arcadia City Councilmember John Wuo?
Hopefully we will get answers to these inquiries soon. You would think that corruption of this magnitude would at least be getting some kind of official City Hall review. Though I do not get the impression that Chief of Police Robert "Don't Call Me Woody" Guthrie or City Manager Dominic Lazaretto are burning any midnight oil trying to get to the bottom of any of these matters.
USFIA Head Steve Chen's Ex-Missus Fights To Maintain Opulent Lifestyle
One of the mordantly comical passages found in the BehindMLM report deals with Steve Chen's former missus Jennifer Zhao aka Li Zhao and her attempts to maintain an opulent lifestyle despite Fed demands that she leave her McMansion and fork over her remaining stolen assets.
Steve Chen’s ex-wife stripped of glamorous lifestyle
Jennifer Zhao aka Li Zhao, the mother of Steve Chen’s son, has been all but stripped of the USFIA gravy train she purportedly lived off. Zhao’s USFIA slush fund was just over $3 million, which the Receiver seized in a Bank of America account under the name “Ally Investors”.
Ally Investors was basically a shell company set up for Chen to launder funds to his ex-wife through. This saw Zhao live the high-life at the expense of USFIA investors, with laundered funds spent on a luxury home, Porsche lease payments, credit card bills, shopping sprees, and casino trips.
Zhao was furious upon learning the Receiver had frozen her slush fund account, and filed a motion demanding the Receiver return the seized funds. The motion was denied but Zhao was granted access to a frozen custodial account (the Receiver’s report doesn’t state how much was in it).
As the second-highest paid employee of USFIA, Zhao’s personal relationship with Steve Chen is likely instrumental to further dissecting the scheme’s Ponzi operations.
To that end the Receiver filed a subpoena demanding she turn over documents of interest. Zhao objected, with the court overruling the objection last month.
The Court gave Zhao until February 25, 2016, to produce the subpoenaed documents. On February 25, 2016, Zhao produced documents, which the Receiver and his counsel are in the process of reviewing.
For the moment Zhao resides in a $2.3 million dollar house purchased with stolen USFIA Ponzi funds. The Receiver has demanded that Zhao turn over the Gainsborough Property.
For the time being, Zhao and the Receiver have agreed to try and reach a global resolution of issues and have agreed to defer such discussions until the Receiver has performed additional accounting work and completed discovery.
If a resolution of the Gainsborough Property issue is not reached during those discussions, the Receiver will take necessary and appropriate steps to recover the Gainsborough Property. My guess is “global resolution of issues” is Zhao buying more time, with the property likely to be sold off later in the year.
Great stuff. Much of the information used in this BehindMLM expose' comes from a report prepared for the United States District Court that is presiding over the legal dissolution of the Arcadia USFIA GemCoins ponzi empire. You can link to that here.
Here is a list of all the USFIA'GemCoins assets that have been seized by the government.
Pretty impressive haul. Hopefully all of that money will be returned to the investors defrauded by the USFIA/GemCoins ponzi scheme soon.
We also continue to sincerely hope that news of the whereabouts and current legal condition of former Arcadia Mayor John Wuo will be surfacing soon as well.
One more thing. To date there has been no indication of who Johnny GemCoins Wuo will be endorsing in the upcoming Arcadia City Council election. Though we do suspect that he must be a Bulldozer Bob Harbicht man.