“All that is necessary for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing.”
Sam still thinks his son is out there, a happy boy named Jason. Sam, an apartment manager from San Francisco, is 63 years old and sounds intelligent, vulnerable and naive all at the same time. He has viewed internet photos of the boy and heard his voice on the phone but admits that he has never actually seen his 5 year-old-son.
“On the phone I heard him say, ‘Momma, applesauce. Momma,’ ” he recalls. He remembers how nice the woman who had the child used to be to him. “Her parents lived across the street and she would come up to me and say, ‘I want to have your baby’. She cooked me dinner and I helped her move.” He says that they had unprotected sex for four months. He even gave her cash for birth expenses. (He met her through a dating service.)
The supposed mother of his son, Jianli Qiao, 37, had come to him in April 2012 asking that he visit her and the boy in Beijing. They had broken up many years ago. But Qiao told him that the boy was in the hospital from a meningitis outbreak at his school. Qiao and her parents never took him to see the boy. Instead, the parents kept asking him for $50,000 and he gave Qiao $2,000 to go to the child. He returned home after spending $6,000 for airfare and the hotel for more than a week. Just a couple weeks ago, he says that Qiao had lunch with him and that he gave her $500 for the boy.
(This is Jianli Qiao in a 2010 photo. She is believed to be in Danville or San Ramon.)
But there is no son, boy or child of his. Qiao, according to police reports and an investigation by another private investigator, has pulled a major fraud.
Qiao, who uses the alias Lynn Chow, has conned him for more than $100,000 in the last five years. Sam is perhaps the most glaring example of Qiao’s treachery but other Bay Area men have suffered worse financial losses, damaged credit and anguish because of her.
Qiao prefers designer labels and Mercedes or BMW. She has been accused of: hit-and run driving with property damage, fraud, extortion, identity theft, forgery, trespass, computer hacking, giving false information to a police officer and repeatedly driving without a valid license. She has an immigration hearing coming up in December but has never been convicted of any criminal charges.
I am warning the public by telling the stories of victims who have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars to her and had their lives thrown into turmoil. Despite numerous police reports and complaints about her, the collective reaction by law enforcement and prosecutors has been at best apathetic and at worst negligent. The story of Jianli Qiao is a study in how to game the system. I stand behind my sources. Information comes from victims, police reports and court records. Qiao apparently came to the United States through a brief marriage to a U.S. citizen. It seems that law enforcement and prosecutors, despite her demonstrated patterns of preying on men, use the excuse “it’s a civil matter” as some sort of code for avoiding the hard work to put her behind bars.
I have tried to do my part by reporting Qiao’s misdeeds to: The California Highway Patrol, the Contra Costa Sheriff’s Office, Walnut Creek Police, San Francisco Police and U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement. (And while I have been paid by one of her victims to do some investigating I am writing this because it’s an appalling story.)
Fred, in his mid 50s, is a successful businessman from Lafayette. He does import export and met Qiao through an acquaintance several years ago. He thought Qiao had great connections in China, her native country, and fronted her at least $500,000 worth of goods. However, he alleges that Qiao never paid for the products.
Qiao filed a suit against him, claiming that he owed her $100,000 but she withdrew the complaint. (It’s become a Qiao standard maneuver in that she is the first to file a suit against her former boyfriends .) Over the years, Qiao has used his name and social security number to rent apartments, to try to buy an $80,000 BMW, get cell phone service and open credit accounts.
After each incident of fraud or attempted identity theft, Fred has made a police report in person with the appropriate police agency. This has been going on for at least five years. Because of the idetnity theft, his credit score has dropped at least 200 points. In a time of tight credit, this makes it tough for his business to get loans. And no prosecution of Qiao has been attempted, just another piece of paper in a police records section. Fred has had to hire an attorney and credit repair agencies to try to straighten out the mess. No progress yet.
(Qiao likes to text acquaintances photos of cash she has on her–this photo is from her.)
A few months ago Fred’s luxury auto was struck, parked outside his relative’s house, at night by a vehicle very similar to the one Qiao was using at the time. He was not in it but there was property damage. He made a report to the California Highway Patrol. The CHP even later stopped Qiao as she drove near the scene of the crime. They cited her for driving without a license but she drove away. The CHP later located her vehicle and saw that it had recent front-end damage consistent with the damage to Fred’s car. They tried to interview her but she refused. (She currently has another hit-and-run case pending, also facing a charge of providing false information to police, in Walnut Creek muni court.) In Fred’s case the CHP officer said that they could not conclusively prove that Qiao was the driver. No charges were filed.
It’s because of his common enemy that Fred and the other victims know each other, sort of forming the Jianli Qiao Misery Society. Their attorneys sometimes commiserate with each other, compare notes and write letters to various authorities. But no one seems to care.
“I feel disappointed in the system,” Fred says. “I feel the system does not work properly. Who is protecting her and how are they protecting her?”
It was while Fred was with Qiao in January 2010 that he heard her talking on the phone several times to Sam. Fred signed a declaration in which he stated that Qiao told him that Sam though he had a son by her who was living with her. Qiao confidend in Fred that she was sleeping with Sam because he was rich “and she was taking money from him and lying to him about the child being alive.” He heard her asking Sam to pay money for supposed child birth expenses. Fred stated in the declaration:
Harry, a 72-year-old retired engineer from Orinda, met Qiao a few years ago through a real estate agent. He had a romantic fling with her and he leased her his house. Her checks to him soon started bouncing more than a sugared-up kid on a trampoline.
Like she had already done against Sam, she accused Harry of domestic violence and sought a restraining order. It was while he was out of the house that Qiao packed up about $60,000 worth of his furniture and possessions, “down to the light bulbs and toilet paper” and took off. A judge had agreed that she be evicted. He tried to pursue criminal charges against her with the Contra Costa Sheriff but was told “it was a civil matter.” He also claims that she took some sensitive information that were on his hard drives.
Harry continued trying to pursue criminal charges but each time sheriff’s would tell him that “it was a domestic deal.” She had also been arrested for apparently breaking into and squatting in another house in Orinda. He turned over all the documents he had on her to the sheriff’s office. She was always trying to talk him into investing between $100,000 to $400,000 to start some sort of engineering venture in China.
There was a restraining order issued against her alleging elder abuse but no criminal complaints were ever prosecuted.
I found the sheriff’s detective, now retired, who had investigated Qiao. He would not comment on the matter but just said that his investigation was referred to a federal agency. I then notified a Contra Costa County sheriff’s fraud detective by phone, email and a report that Qiao was still up to her old tricks, but I never received a response.
Harry has since filed for bankruptcy, and he blames Qiao for part of it.
Joseph and George
Joseph is a young man who used to live next to Qiao a few years ago in San Ramon. He denied being involved with her romantically but did have a brief friendship with her. Like the others, Qiao told him that she owned some type of jewelry business in China. She duped him into leasing a new Mercedes for her in his name, stating that she had none of the necessary legal documents including a California Driver’s License. Qiao was supposed to make payments to him but she started bouncing checks to him, for $50,000, $9,000 and $1,000. He later learned from the California Highway Patrol that it was his vehicle that Qiao allegedly used to crash into Fred’s car.
George, from Oakland, loaned Qiao $30,800 and later sued her. The case settled and terms were not public. She had approached him stating that she was starting a business and that she could not get funds for it from China. At one point she had told him that she was going back to China and would not repay him.
Many of these men have attorneys who had been writing letters to various law enforcement agencies asking them to do something about Qiao. But, as is the pattern, nothing was done.
This account of interacting with Qiao came from Andrew:
I met her at well furnished, neat and lavish three bedroom apartment in Walnut Creek. She said she owned a house in Blackhawk and was in escrow on a property in Oakland near her company. She indicated she was in a tile import/export business and had a warehouse business. She also said she had a masters degree in business (MBA) from China.
She shared with me she had a daughter aged 8 living with her parents on the east coast. I saw a framed photo of her daughter on her dresser. She never indicated she had a son. I asked her why her daughter lives with her parents and not her, she had said her mom was a better mother.
She said her parents lived on the east coast not in China as she had indicated to Sam.
She had a scar on her, indicated she had a baby C-Section, the scar was clearly about 8 years old.
I don’t believe this is a little boy, she would have said she had a son, if one existed. She shared she had a daughter. I am a single dad, this is how and why kids were discussed with her. I would have imagined if there was a son, she would have mentioned him as well.
What struck me as odd, was that she had about 6-10 cell phones. I wasn’t clear on the actual number, so lets say 8. All of them were on chargers, indicating they were ALL being used and at times one or more would beep or buzz suggesting a text message and that they were indeed functioning. All of the phones were either late model iPhone’s or Androids, I believe there was also one blackberry. All had bling-bling like cases on them. My first impression of this was WTF? why would someone need so many phones? Oddly my first thought that went thru my mind was mafia. I was actually scared there for a moment. I felt weird and at that point was clearly uncomfortable being in her apt, despite her sexual advances on me trying to relax me to stay.
She always would try to impress me with things, her designer clothes, the car she was driving or trying to buy. She wanted details about my credit score one time, making it seem like a comparison.. I told her I don’t care what you have so stop trying to impress me. I am successful, but I am also modest and not flashy, which is a huge turnoff for me. She also one time had a rental car with really high end golf clubs and shopping bags in back. When I asked why she had a rental car, she had difficulty trying to explain it away.. red flag for me something wasn’t right. I had to put the spare time on this rental because it had a flat. This is how I became aware of the golf clubs and such.
Her game to win men over is sex. she would offer herself up and be a nasty girl trying to use sex as her means of winning you over. She would offer her self to me and make lots of other offers to me in attempt to get me to like or see her more often. For example, she said she wanted to have a threesome with her girlfriend and me.. She kept wanting to set it up, but at this point I had her figured out and began to blow her off. She wouldn’t hesitate to reach over and unzip me, pull me out and do her thing with me, even minutes after seeing her. She clearly has the use sex to win a man over thing down.
On May 19, 2010, Sam walked into San Francisco’s Southern Police Station and made a detailed report about Qiao’s fraud and was able to document to police his losses in the fake child case. He had also hired a private investigator to look into Qiao and the situation. He had even preserved text messages in which she repeatedly kept asking for more money for medical expenses for the fake child and for her living expenses. Sam had believed she was pregnant with his child because Qiao looked pregnant. The private investigator searched throughout California and could find no such child having been born, even obtaining letters from Vital Statistics departments in the counties. When he asked Qiao how come no birth certificate could be found, she told him that it was because the child’s name was in Chinese. (This,of course, does not make sense as names of parents are also on birth certificates.)
An official familiar with the San Francisco case said that it was not prosecuted because even after Sam learned that there was no child, he kept giving Qiao money. In other words, it would not look like Sam is a victim because he knows the facts but continues to provide money to Qiao.
When Qiao was supposed to have an immigration hearing in San Francisco in June of this year, Sam went to the hearing hoping he could speak on her behalf. He told me that at the time, he thought that if Qiao stayed in the country that it would be his best chance for ever being to see his son. The hearing has been pushed back to December. Such hearings are closed and Immigration will not release any information.
It’s apparent that he is still conflicted about whether the child exists. It’s as if he is trying to cling to some last hope that this boy, his flesh-and-blood, is on the planet. But in the next sentence he will recall the damage Qiao has done to him. She has opened up charge accounts in his name and damaged his credit. He is trying get his apartment building refinanced but has been turned down because of his credit score. Qiao charged $10,000 worth of furniture in his name but he can’t get the store to realize it was fraud.
He recalls a time when they were together that he bought her a $700 Luis Vuitton purse. “She hit me across the face with it and told me I was cheap. She said it wasn’t big enough.”
“She needs to be held liable for her crimes,” he says, “Deporting her will not do anything. Local police just sidestep this all as a `domestic matter.'”
“She needs to be stopped and I want to see her in an orange jumpsuit.”