The Palm House Hotel

$50.0 million

Palm Beach, FL

2013 - Present

Real estate developer Richard Matthews and real estate attorney Leslie Evans teamed up to solicit investments through the EB-5 Program for a hotel and condo development project known as the Palm House Hotel in Palm Beach, Florida.

In promotional materials used to attract investors, Matthews and Evans falsely represented that the Palm House’s advisory board would include Bill Clinton, Donald Trump, Celine Dion and Bill Koch.

From 2012 to 2014, Matthews and Evans raised over $50 million from 60 Chinese and Iranian investors, many of whom are now suing Matthews and Evans to recover their funds. The Palm House pair is accused of diverting EB-5 investors’ money to pay personal taxes and buy expensive luxury items, including a 151 foot yacht.

In March 2018, the US Attorney General for the District of Connecticut filed multiple charges, including wire fraud and bank fraud, against Matthews and Evans for alleged crimes committed with the Palm House Hotel funds.