Fraud at Olivet University

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Fraud at Olivet University

The deserted Olivet University campus in Dover, NY.

The deserted Olivet University campus in Dover, NY.

Josh Keefe, Newsweek

The deserted Olivet University campus in Dover, NY.

Josh Keefe, Newsweek

Josh Keefe, Newsweek

The deserted Olivet University campus in Dover, NY.

Students driving to school along Route 684 might notice the brick buildings and large campus the former Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center, with a sign out front that now reads “Olivet University.” However, a closer look reveals empty buildings with broken windows and deserted grounds. Not only does no school function at the site, executives of the University are now being accused of using it in a 35 million dollar money-laundering scheme.
Dr. David Jang, a Korean-American Presbyterian pastor, founded Olivet Theological College and Seminary, with campuses in Los Angeles and Seoul. His university seeks to educate young Christian adults for the broader world. However, charges of fraud against executive team members has brought attention to the Dover, NY location.
Top executives of the university were indicted on multiple counts, including fraud. IBT Media Group, the owner of Newsweek Magazine, and Christian Media, an online publisher in Washington, were both charged for pretending to accept donation money for computer services and using it for other purposes. Those involved used the name of a fake accountant, lied about the financial standings of Olivet to make it seem more stable than it truly was, and used the money allocated for computer services for Olivet’s day-to-day operations.
Ultimately, the parties charged in the case included Olivet University, Andrew Lin, chairman of Olivet’s board of trustees, John Xiao, Olivet’s finance director and dean of business school, and William Anderson, CEO of Christian Media Corporation and Olivet trustee. For misrepresenting the company’s finances in order to obtain loans and mishandling funds, the defendants were charged for scheme to defraud, conspiracy, money laundering, falsification of business records, and criminal contempt.
The investigation is ongoing, and those charged have not admitted wrong-doing. The Manhattan District Attorney encourages New York citizens in contact with the involved companies to come forward with any information that might assist the state in building a case against the University.