SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A federal indictment has a local businessman’s fall from grace facing a new low.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Abe Alizadeh, 56, forged financial documents to prevent his business empire from collapsing.
Alizadeh owned dozens of Jack In The Box, TGI Fridays, Sonic Burger and Qdoba Mexican Grill restaurants in the area. At one point his assets were estimated at $1 billion.
But Kobra Properties, where he was a principal partner field for bankruptcy in 2008, forcing many restaurants to close.
On Thursday, Alizadeh’s sprawling Granite Bay home shows no sign he’s in trouble. In years past, his neighbors have seen him host lavish fundraisers here, even hosted then-Gov Arnold Schwarzenegger.
But on this day, a judge has issued an arrest warrant for him, saying Alizadeh’s success is a fraud.
Over the years, Alizadeh has pleaded guilty to not paying state taxes, with many of his companies declaring bankruptcy.
Now, the new federal indictment alleged that during the financial crisis, his troubles led to a scheme to defraud $20 million from banks by forging documents to increase loan amounts.
The federal indictment appears to be a new low for Alizadeh. Neighbors who didn’t want to go on camera say he stopped paying gardeners, family members have asked for help with legal funds, and that his massive debt has led him to hire body guards.
If convicted, he’ll face a lengthy stay in a new home behind bars.