Four Chinese victims of a 50-million-US-dollar visa fraud scheme filed a lawsuit to Los Angeles Court on Friday.
The scheme involved as many as 100 Chinese citizens, which led to a federal investigation followed by lawsuit by the alleged victims.
Federal authorities raided a business called California Investment Immigration Fund located in San Gabriel Valley, Los Angeles, on April 6.
The business sought over 50 million dollars in total from 100 Chinese investors and claimed to help them obtain permanent US residency through an EB-5 program, through which each foreigner invests at least half a million dollars in a US business that creates American jobs.
Four of the victims claimed that they signed the contract in 2011. However, those projects were not even built and they never got their green cards as promised.
"Most of the investors heard about these EB5 projects through agencies in China. But most of them did not really know about details of the projects, aside from pretty-looking presentations," attorney Jing Wang said. "As far as I know from my clients, they did not even know who was their project attorney nor what legal files they have signed."
Wang also said that most of the investors did not understand the legal process of EB5 and misunderstood many issues. They trusted their agency too much and did not seek more information.
Faced with the expiration of their temporary status in November, each of the four victims asked for a full refund of their investment along with other compensations, worth up to 2 million dollars in total.