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In re Sanctuary Belize Litigation

In November 2018, the FTC announced that a federal district court in Maryland issued an order temporarily shutting down the largest overseas real estate investment scam the FTC has ever targeted. According to the FTC, the scam was established by Andris Pukke, a recidivist scammer currently living in California, and he perpetuated it even while serving a prison sentence for obstruction of justice. The alleged scheme took in more than $100 million, marketing lots in what supposedly would become a luxury development in Central America known by several names, including Sanctuary Belize, Sanctuary Bay, and The Reserve. In late August 2020, a district court ruled in the FTC’s favor, and BCP Director Andrew Smith issued a public statement on the memorandum opinion.

In January 2021, a federal district court entered final orders against the three primary individual defendants—Andris Pukke, Peter Baker, and Luke Chadwick, and related corporations—in the FTC’s’s case involving the allegedly deceptive sale of real estate properties in Belize to U.S. consumers. The orders finalize a September 2020 memorandum opinion requiring Pukke and Baker jointly to pay $120.2 million to the Commission with Chadwick also jointly responsible for $91.9 million of that amount.

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