2009 - 2014
Linda Yoo, an immigration attorney based in Washington State, has agreed to settle with the SEC after receiving commissions for helping clients invest in the EB-5 Program. The SEC alleges that, between January 2009 and January 2014, Yoo recommended her foreign clients participate in the EB-5 program. Although her recommendations and fees were legal according to SEC regulations, Yoo also received over $200,000 in commission money and asked that the funds be deposited in a foreign bank account.
Section 15(a)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 makes it unlawful for an unregistered broker “to effect any transactions in, or to induce or attempt to induce the purchase or sale of, any security.” Because the SEC considers EB-5 investments a security covered under 15(a)(1), Yoo’s commission violates the Exchange Act.
As part of her settlement, Yoo agreed to forfeit the commission and pay civil penalties and interest.