A Suwanee-based realtor and investor has been ordered to pay millions of dollars in restitution and spend more than seven years in jail for defrauding clients out of $22 million over a two-year period, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Emily Moerdermo Fu, who operated Capital Investment International Management in Suwanee and pled guilty to charges of mail fraud in July, was sentenced to seven years and three months in prison by U.S. District Judge Richard W. Story on Dec. 7, 2018, court records state.
In addition to jail time, Fu has also been ordered to pay $22,043,640.67 as restitution to her victims and will spend three years in a supervised release following her prison sentence.
"This announcement serves as a reminder to scam artists who blatantly commit fraud that they will be held accountable through the judicial system,” Scott D. Fix, Acting U.S. Postal Inspector in Charge of the Charlotte Division, stated in a release.
A complaint filed against Fu states that in October 2014, Fu’s company purchased the Shoppes at Brannon Crossing, at 405 Peachtree Parkway in Cumming, for $15 million, but it was later discovered that Fu secured an undisclosed and unauthorized loan of $6 million against the property.
The complaint states that, “Given Fu’s experience in the real estate industry, she knew that a real estate lender would send, or cause to be sent, mailings ... to the borrower about the loan, including past due notices and demands.”
By directing loan mailings to Capital Investment’s main office in Suwanee, instead of the appropriate offices for the Shoppes at Brannon, Fu concealed “evidence of the fraudulent loan’s existence” from the property manager, the complaint states.
“While Fu was a well-respected real estate and financial professional, she took advantage of her reputation and clients’ trust to defraud them,” U.S. Attorney Byung J. Pak stated in a news release. “In some cases she created fictitious closings and then pocketed the money. In other instances, she went through with the closing and used the property as collateral for unauthorized loans for her own benefit, meanwhile embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars in managing such properties.”
Before being brought up on charges, Fu was a prominent real estate professional in the Atlanta area and was recognized in 2012 for the Individual of the Year, Governor’s International Award.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.