USFIA offices raided, SEC granted TRO
Details are sketchy, but from what I’ve been able to put together the SEC filed for a sealed Temporary Restraining Order against USFIA, Steve Chen, Alliance Financial Group, Aborell MGMT LLC, Aborell Advisors LLC, Aborell Reit II LLC, Ahome Real Estate LLC, Amkey Inc, US China Consultation Association and Quail Ranch Golf Course LLC on the 22nd of September.
The TRO was granted by an Arizona District Court Judge on the 28th of September. The case however is still under seal so I don’t have any further details at this time.
The image of the order granting the TRO above is courtesy of the Sierra Madre Tattler.
Citing local sources, the Tattler has also published the following updates:
The FBI and SEC are now in the USFIA offices seizing assets. FBI showed up at 1PM and cleared out the building. Everything is going into boxes and being taken out.
Several FBI officers were at John Wuo’s house today. Arcadia PD was brought in as backup.
At the time of publication, Wuo doesn’t appear to be listed as a defendant in the SEC’s TRO request.
The SEC’s filing against USFIA marks the first regulatory action we’ve seen against an MLM cryptocurrency opportunity in the US.
Stay tuned for updates once the SEC’s case against USFIA is unsealed.
Update 30th September 2015 – As part of the granted TRO several USFIA related bank accounts have been frozen, including:
- four USFIA Inc. accounts with Bank of America
- one USFIA Inc. account with East West Bank
- two accounts with Bank of America in the names of Steve Chen and Luyang Li (???)
- one account with Far East National Bank in the name of “Li Chen aka Steve Chen”
- one account with Chase Bank in the name of Steve Chen
- one account with Chase Bank in the name of “Wei He or Li Chen”
- one Amauction Inc. account each with Bank of America, National Bank of California and East West Bank
- two AHome Real Estate LLC accounts with Bank of America
- one Amkey Inc. account each with First Regional Bank, National Bank of California and Far East National Bank (2 accounts)
- four Amkey Inc. accounts with Bank of America
- one Amkey VOIP account with First Regional Bank
- one Aborell Investment Associates I LLC account with Bank of America
- one Aborell REIT II LLC account each with Torrey Pines Bank, Bank of America (2 accounts), JPMorgan Chase
- two Apollo Advisors I LLC accounts with Bank of America
- one Apollo Investors account with Bank of America
- one Apollo Mgmt I LLC account with Bank of America
- one Alliance NGN Inc. account with HSBC and four accounts with Bank of America
- one Ammine SRL account with Far East National Bank
- one Aborell Management I LLC account with Bank of America
- one Apollo REIT I account with Bank of America
- one Apollo REIT II LLC account with JPMorgan Chase
- two US China Consultation Association accounts with Bank of America
- one Alliance Financial Group account with Bank of America
- two Quail Ranch Golf Club LLC accounts with Bank of America
- one account with Bank of America in the names of “Li Chen & Li Zhao”
How much USFIA GemCoin Ponzi funds Chen laundered through the above accounts is currently unknown.
I’m thinking if raids were carried out today and the above accounts have been frozen, hopefully we’ll get a motion to unseal the case by the end of the week.
Update 30th September 2015 #2 – Responses from Chen and USFIA as to why a preliminary injunction should not be granted are due by the 5th of October.
The TRO itself expires on the 13th of October, by which date a preliminary injunction hearing will have taken place.
Also a Temporary Receiver has been appointed, as per the order granting the TRO:
Thomas Seaman is appointed as temporary receiver of Defendant USFIA Inc. (and the rest of Chen’s companies), with full powers of an equity receiver, including, but not limited to, full power over all funds, assets, collateral, premises (whether owners, leased, occupied, or otherwise controlled), choses in action, books, records, papers and other property belonging to, being managed or in the possession of or control of the Receivership Entities.
“Receivership Entities” is defined as all the named defendant companies in the TRO.
Update 30th September 2015 #3 – Photo coverage of the raid and USFIA employee walks of shame:
There was also a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement helicopter flying around while all of this went down.
Photos courtesy of Terry Miller from Beacon Media (Arcadia Weekly), who was at the scene.