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Press Release

Real estate developer convicted for spending over $500,000 of investor’s funds on vacations and mortgage

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas

HOUSTON – A 47-year-old Houston resident has pleaded guilty to wire fraud, announced U.S. Attorney Alamdar S. Hamdani.

Salek admitted to his involvement in a fraudulent scheme to obtain more than $1 million and falsely informing an investor the funds would be used to develop real estate.

During the plea, Walter Salek admitted between 2019 and 2021, he entered into agreements with an investor to develop real estate in the Houston area. As per the agreement, Salek was to contribute real estate, and the investor was to provide cash to develop the properties. Once developed, properties were to be either leased or sold.

The investor believed the funds would be used for the developments and deposited over $1 million into business bank accounts that Salek controlled through use of interstate wire communications. However, Salek diverted at least $571,000 of the investment funds for his own personal use on mortgage payments and luxury vacations. 

U.S. District Judge Sim Lake will impose sentencing July 11. At that time, Salek faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine.

He was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.

The FBI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Belinda Beek is prosecuting the case.

Updated April 8, 2024

Securities, Commodities, & Investment Fraud