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Unnamed buyer makes offer on Burke Mountain resort

The Lodge at Burke Mountain awaits guests, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, in East Burke, Vt. After months of delays the new hotel and conference center officially opened Thursday at the Vermont ski resort owned by a Miami businessman accused of defrauding foreign investors. (AP Photo/Lisa Rathke)
Lisa Rathke
Associated Press
An unnamed buyer has submitted a bid to buy Burke Mountain resort, one of several properties caught up in the EB-5 scandal. The ski resort has been run by a court-appointed receiver since 2016 after federal regulators accused former owner Ariel Quiros and developer Bill Stenger of operating a "Ponzi-like" scheme.

An unnamed buyer has submitted a bid for a Northeast Kingdom ski resort caught up in the EB-5 scandal, according to recent court filings. Michael Goldberg, the receiver in charge of Burke Mountain resort, said in a report filed on May 30 that he’d received an initial offer to buy the resort, though he didn’t identify the potential buyer or the price.

Golberg wrote that he planned to file a motion with the court in June recommending that the initial offer for Burke be used as a “stalking horse” bid in an auction — the same process Goldberg used to sell Jay Peak last year.

The news of the offer was first reported Tuesday by VTDigger.

More from Vermont Public: Federal judge approves Jay Peak sale to Utah-based Pacific Group Resorts

In September, Jay Peak was sold to Pacific Group Resorts, Inc, a Utah-based ski conglomerate, for $76 million. Goldberg, in his report, said he hoped to finish the sale of Burke Mountain by the end of the year. A judge will need to give final approval to the sale of Burke as well.

Burke Mountain, along with Jay Peak, was previously owned by Florida businessman Ariel Quiros and managed by developer Bill Stenger. The men used the federal EB-5 program to fund development projects across the Northeast Kingdom, including building a hotel at Burke Mountain and building a waterpark at Jay Peak. The EB-5 program gives foreign investors green cards if they put money into development projects in economically depressed regions.

More from Vermont Public: In exclusive interview, Bill Stenger discusses regrets in EB-5 investment fraud scandal

Burke Mountain and Jay Peak ski resort were put into receivership in 2016 after the Securities and Exchange Commission accused Quiros and Stenger of misappropriating more than $200 million from investors using the EB-5 program.

The proceeds from the sale of Burke will go to paying back defrauded investors, according Goldberg’s report.

Quiros and Stenger settled the case brought by the SEC, and were later sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to separate federal criminal charges related to the fraud. Quiros was sentenced to five years in prison. Stenger served about half of his 18-month sentence before being released.

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Liam is Vermont Public’s public safety reporter, focusing on law enforcement, courts and the prison system.
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