Former Employee of Triple Five Development Enters Guilty Plea to Federal Fraud Charges
Las Vegas, Nev. – A former employee of Triple Five Development, a company which built retail shopping malls in Las Vegas, including Boca Park and Village Square, Minneapolis, and Edmonton, Canada, pleaded guilty today to wire fraud for using investor's funds for himself, instead of for the development of commercial real estate projects, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.
Jean Marc Eljwaidi, aka Jean Marc Joveidi, 44, of Las Vegas, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge James C. Mahan to one count of wire fraud and is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 29, 2012. He faces up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
From approximately November 2008 to June 2009, Eljwaidi obtained funds from investors for the development of a commercial real estate project at Interstate 215 and Russell Road in Las Vegas. In November 2008, Eljwaidi knew that the project could not be completed, but nevertheless enticed persons to continue to invest in the project. Ejwaidi provided the victim investors with promissory notes in which he represented that he would use their investments to develop the project and would return their investments within a few months with an approximately 25 to 75 percent profit, when he knew that he would use the funds to pay his personal expenses, maintain his affluent lifestyle and pay extension fees to keep the land from foreclosure. When the time came to pay the victim investors, Eljwaidi sought to delay repayment by soliciting more money from the investors, by repaying them with nominal amounts to appease them, or by avoiding the investors. As a result the victim investors were never repaid or repaid nominal sums. The loss to the victim investors was approximately $1.8 million.
The case is being investigated by the FBI and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rob MacDonald and Roger Yang.
Today's announcement is part of efforts underway by President Obama's Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (FFETF) which was created in November 2009 to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys' offices and state and local partners, it's the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations. Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed more than 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants including more than 2,700 mortgage fraud defendants. For more information on the task force, visit www.stopfraud.gov.