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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, March 15, 2021

Property developer sentenced to prison for fraud

GAINESVILLE, Ga. - Louis Beria has been sentenced to prison for defrauding a company and its elderly owner.  The defendant was previously an advisor and property manager of an apartment complex owned by the victim.

“The victim trusted Beria to manage his property but was betrayed when the defendant diverted over $1.6 million for his own benefit,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Kurt R. Erskine.  “With elder fraud unfortunately on the rise, it remains a priority for our office.”

“Beria stole the hard-earned money of an investor who trusted him to manage his properties,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “No matter how clever the investment scam is, the FBI will find and hold accountable anyone who preys on unsuspecting investors.”

According to Acting U.S. Attorney Erskine, the charges and other information presented in court: The victim was an elderly, German investor, who began purchasing properties in Northern Georgia several years ago.  Louis Beria met the victim and became an advisor and property manager for the victim. 

Among other tasks, the victim hired Beria to manage an apartment complex he owned in Atlanta.  While managing that apartment complex, Beria himself owned a separate apartment complex in Atlanta.  Beria hired a company to do construction work on the complex he owned but used money from the victim’s apartment complex to pay for it.  Ultimately, Beria stole $1,621,979 and lied to the victim about how he used this money.

Louis Beria, 64, of Milton, Georgia, was sentenced to four years, three months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $1,621,979.  Beria was convicted on these charges on November 4, 2020, after he pleaded guilty.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Huber, Deputy Chief of the Complex Frauds Section, prosecuted the case.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is part of the Department of Justice Transnational Elder Fraud Strike Force. The Strike Force focuses on investigating and prosecuting defendants associated with foreign-based fraud schemes that disproportionately affect American seniors.  These include romance scams, phone scams, mass-mailing fraud schemes, and tech-support fraud schemes.  For further information on these scams, see https://www.justice.gov/elderjustice/senior-scam-alert.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.

Topic(s): 
Elder Justice
Financial Fraud
Updated March 15, 2021