Karen Hanover was sentenced to nearly three years in prison for defrauding investors of $1.4 million in a commercial real estate scheme, the United States Attorney’s Office said Friday.
Karen Hanover, 48, convinced victims to invest $15,000 to $30,000 in her investing schemes, guaranteeing a 100 percent return or a 100 percent refund if investors didn’t have a commercial property within a year, prosecutors said. The claims were false. Hanover pitched the scheme to investors at seminars in Southern California, Las Vegas and Dallas. She ran the scheme through two Long Beach companies, Commercial Investment Education LLC and Kharmic Life Strategies Inc.
When the victims demanded their money back, Hanover bullied and intimidated them, threatening them with jail time if they reported her, according to court documents.
This is not Hanover’s first time in prison. In 2011, she was found guilty of impersonating an FBI agent by using a website to alter her voice and phone number. As the agent, she threatened clients who were complaining about her real estate scheme with imprisonment. For that crime, she got six months in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Hanover pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud. A hearing to determine how much restitution she must pay approximately 45 victims is scheduled for May 8.