Rep. George Santos (R-NY) defended his employer later accused of running a "Ponzi scheme" after he was alerted to the possible fraud by a customer.
The newly elected congressman claimed publicly that he was unaware of fraud at Harbor City Capital Corp., but a since-deleted tweet shows Santos interacting in June 2020 with a potential customer who said he considered a stand by line of credit through the lender but found it to be fraudulent, reported CNN.
“The market instability is leading to sever (sic) capital erosion. @HarborCityCap offers you a strategy that mitigates loss and risk while creating cash flow, meanwhile your principle is 100% secured by an SBLC held by various major institutions. #fixedincome #alternativeinvestment #win,” Santos tweeted in April 2020 under the name George Devolder, his mother’s family name.
But in June a customer responded to that tweet and accused Harbor City Capital of running a fraud.
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“George, this SBLC I received from Harbor City was looked into, and Deutsche Bank claims is a complete fraud and not signed by the bank officer on the document. How do you explain this?,” the user said.
Santos defended the company and its products.
“I’m sorry I’m not following you," Santos responded. "Could you please send me an email at George.firstname.lastname@example.org and we can go over this together. Our SBLC is 100% legitimate and issued by their institution. I look forward to hearing from you."
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has sued Harbor City Capital, alleging among other things that the company was never issued a SBLC, and a spokesman for Deutsche Bank said the financial institution never had any affiliation with the company, where Santos worked from January 2020 through April 2021.