A company founded by former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has filed for bankruptcy, citing negative press and lawsuits by investors who call it a “scam perpetrated by savvy and politically connected operatives” to exploit overseas investors.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that the bankruptcy filing by the electric car company cites $7.5 million won by 12 investors and pending lawsuits. It says GreenTech Automotive raised almost $142 million from investors from 2009 to 2013 as part of a visa program that offered immigrant investors permanent residency, and says investors were warned the status wasn’t guaranteed.
The company shut down its Mississippi plant last year. The Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing also lists almost $5 million in debt owed to the state of Mississippi and Tunica County, which offered it economic development incentives to open a manufacturing facility there. The filing also points a finger at U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Republican from Iowa. Grassley had raised national security concerns related to GreenTech’s visa program usage. And yet another finger points at a 2015 lawsuit by an automotive parts company.