* Remember the story I posted not long ago about how a guy had thoroughly bamboozled Springfield’s top lobbyist, Gov. Pat Quinn, House Speaker Michael Madigan, David Axelrod’s son and many others? Well, that guy was indicted yesterday…
A Chicago man fraudulently raised $160 million from Chinese nationals who invested in his purported plan to build a convention center complex with hotels near O’Hare International Airport, the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago announced Wednesday.
Charges were lodged Wednesday against Anshoo Sethi, 30, who was the founder and managing member of A Chicago Convention Center LLC, which told investors it planned to build a hotel and convention center on 3 acres of land east of O’Hare.
The indictment alleges that between January 2011 and February 2013, Sethi defrauded 290 Chinese investors and deceived the U.S. government in its review of visa applications through false statements and representations.
According to the indictment, foreign nationals may obtain a certain kind of visa if they invest money in domestic projects. Sethi solicited Chinese investors interested in obtaining this visa to invest at least half a million dollars apiece, plus a $41,500 administrative fee.
* Around 10:30 this morning, I received this e-mail from the Cheri Bustos campaign…
BREAKING NEWS: Bobby Schilling’s Controversial “Visa for Sale” Program Dominating Illinois Headlines with Indictment
Last night, a high profile indictment for fraud involving Bobby Schilling’s controversial “Visa for Sale” program was filed. Schilling himself has also been recently scrutinized for using his influence as a former Member of Congress to cash in big, selling U.S. residency to wealthy foreign nationals.
The release referenced an earlier Bustos release…
After getting elected thanks to the help of executives that get rich off of wealthy foreign investors, ex-Congressman Bobby Schilling stood up in support of the controversial “Visa for Sale” program. Now he’s making a six-figure salary working for the same executives that helped him get elected.
“If this is what Bobby Schilling means by ‘leading by example,’ then what should Illinois working families expect next?” said Jeremy Jansen, Bustos’ Campaign Manager. “Schilling not only voted to give tax breaks to corporations shipping Illinois jobs overseas and fled a public meeting with workers whose jobs are now in China, but after losing re-election Schilling walked out of Congress into a six-figure job selling American visas to wealthy Chinese investors that pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to game the immigration system.”
* Schilling’s campaign responded a few moments ago…
Cheri Bustos Steps In Cowpie
Bustos co-sponsored a bill in January that would make EB-5 program permanent
Clumsy attempt to change subject backfires
Bustos campaign melting down in desperate bid to divert attention from
Bustos’ broken promise to give back 10 percent of her salary
EAST MOLINE, Ill.—Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (D-East Moline) lashed out mindlessly today by attacking Bobby Schilling (R-Colona) for supposedly “selling visas.” The EB-5 program that Bobby Schilling’s employer, CMB Regional Centers, operates under is renewed by Congress every three years, and this past January, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos co-sponsored legislation to make the EB-5 program permanent. How’s that for hypocrisy?
H.R. 15, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, has nearly 200 co-sponsors in Congress, including Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. The bill “makes the EB-5 visa regional center program permanent.”
Yes, you read that correctly—today Cheri Bustos lashed out against a program she co-sponsored. The program has incredible bipartisan support and even includes support from Bustos’ mentor, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois).
The EB-5 program does the exact opposite of outsourcing jobs. For far too long, American wealth has been invested overseas, creating jobs in countries all over the world. The reason Senator Durbin and others in Congress support the EB-5 program is to lure foreign investment to the United States, creating new American jobs here at home.
Under the EB-5 program, CMB Regional Centers in Rock Island has helped create more than 90,000 new American jobs and helped add more than $7 billion in economic activity to rural and high unemployment areas throughout the United States of America.
Bustos’ claim that the program is “selling visas” is ridiculous because selling visas is illegal. It seems Bustos’ desperate campaign doesn’t know much about her record in Congress because today they attacked a U.S. government program that Congresswoman Bustos has passionately supported by co-sponsoring a bill in Congress to make the EB-5 program permanent.
Cheri Bustos cannot have it both ways. If she thought the EB-5 program was a bad idea, she should not have sponsored legislation to make it permanent. Either she thinks the voters of Illinois are not paying attention, or she thinks we are too stupid to notice that she is lambasting a program she has previously supported for political gain. Clearly her sudden revelation that the EB-5 program is a work of evil is politically motivated by her need to change the subject from her broken promise to give back 10 percent of her congressional salary.
Schilling campaign manager Steven Shearer commented, “One wonders what caused Cheri Bustos to make another unforced error of this magnitude. Out here in farm country it’s called stepping in a cowpie.”
And it’s not even September.