Feds charge Hsu with $60 million scam

Norman Hsu faces new federal allegations that he scammed investors across the country out of more than $60 million in order to live a wealthy lifestyle and rub elbows with some of the nation's most prominent movers and shakers.

In the federal complaint announced today by U.S. Attorney Michael Garcia in New York City, Hsu, 56, is charged with one count each of mail fraud and wire fraud, and one count of reimbursing individuals forpolitical contributions, which is against federal campaign law.

Hsu committed the acts while allegedly defrauding investors in scheme involving the purchase of apparel from China and short-term business loans.

If convicted, he faces up to 45 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

Hsu was arrested in Grand Junction, Colo., on Sept. 6, after he failed to show up for a Sept. 5 court appearance in Redwood City for a 1991 grand theft case in which he allegedly ran a pyramid scheme in San Mateo County, bilking local investors of $1 million.

He had been on the lam for 15 years after skipping town before he could be sentenced in 1992, but surrendered to authorities Aug. 31.

The media attention surrounding Hsu began when recent reports questioned the nature of his donations and that of the Paw family of Daly City. A family of modest income, the Paws have given more than $200,000 to Democrats since 2004, reflecting a donor pattern similar to Hsu’s.

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