Colts Neck Man Charged With Bankruptcy Fraud

A Monmouth County man first appeared in court yesterday for allegedly filing a fraudulent bankruptcy claim claiming he had limited assets and hundreds of millions of dollars in liabilities, when in fact he had $ 2.9 million in a hidden bank account, acting US attorney Rachael Honig announced.

Elia Zois, 56, of Colts Neck, is charged by complaint over one count of cover-up in connection with bankruptcy.

According to the complaint, Zois was one of five partners with “Business-2,” a New Jersey-based health care organization that operated approximately 50 retirement homes in New Jersey, Michigan and Wisconsin. On February 6, 2019, he and his wife filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, alleging that between 2014 and 2018, he only had $ 9,000 in assets and $ 201 million in liabilities. , based on its partnership in Business-2. A forensic report concluded that during this period, Zois had received $ 2.9 million in deposits into the bank account of “Business-1” – of which Zois was the sole owner – of which approximately $ 200,000 in income. not declared after filing for bankruptcy. The hidden account was intended to conceal a portion of its income to bypass existing IRS privileges over its known assets.

The count of concealment in a bankruptcy carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $ 250,000.

Acting US Attorney Honig credited investigators from the US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Management Standards, under the direction of Adriana Vamvakas, regional director; and Special Constables from the Department of Labor (OIG), New York Region, under the direction of Acting Special Agent Nikitas Splagounias, the investigation leading to the charges. She also thanked the special agents of the FBI, Milwaukee field office, for their help.

The government is represented by Senior Legal Counsel V. Grady O’Malley of the Gangs and Organized Crime Unit of the United States Attorney’s Office.

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