US arrests Chinese tycoon Wengui over $1bn fraud

Marcus Amudipe
Marcus Amudipe


US authorities have accused a New York-based Chinese property tycoon, Guo Wengui of a billion-dollar fraud.

BBC reported that Wengui and one of his business partners, Kin Ming Je, were charged for wire fraud, securities fraud, bank fraud and money laundering.

Mr Guo is known to be an associate of ex-White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon and  a critic of the Chinese government.

Based on what was posted online, Mr Guo said he was handcuffed and interrogated for about an hour.

Miles Guo, Miles Kwok and “Brother Seven” are some of Mr Guo several aliases.

According to report, he was named in the indictment unsealed Wednesday as Ho Wan Kwok.

He requested political asylum in the United States in 2017 on the grounds of alleged persecution by Communist Party officials.

According to the accusation, Mr. Guo and Mr. Je allegedly raised $1 billion from thousands of online followers who believed they were financing media companies and a prestigious membership club.

It was also alleged that they stole millions from investors using cryptocurrency called Himalaya Coin.

According to the Prosecutors, the money were moved into personal accounts traced to the personal accounts of Mr Guo and Mr Je.

It was reported that the money was spent on luxury property, yachts, Lamborghini and Bugatti sports cars, and nearly $1m of Chinese and Persian rugs.

The US government have seized around  $634m of the proceeds from 21 different bank accounts since September.

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