This property at 9506 19th Ave. SE in Everett is at the center of an alleged theft-by-loan case. (Zachariah Bryan / The Herald)

This property at 9506 19th Ave. SE in Everett is at the center of an alleged theft-by-loan case. (Zachariah Bryan / The Herald)

Two more men accused of lying to illegally obtain $1.5M loan

The pair were allegedly front men in a scheme to get a federal loan to open a marijuana shop.

EVERETT — Two more people have been accused of deceiving just about everybody to acquire real estate and open a marijuana shop.

According to allegations recently filed in Snohomish County Superior Court, James Koory, 55, and Henry Jacky, 56, were in on a deal to trick property owners into selling a retail building and lying to a bank to obtain a $1.5 million Small Business Administration loan.

They are charged with first-degree theft.

The convoluted web of fiction, prosecutors say, was all to open Mari J’s Highway Pot Shop off Highway 527.

The deception reportedly began in September 2013, when a broker, 57-year-old Conrado Topacio, entered a listing agreement with the former property owners. He appeared to lie constantly, sometimes cutting off communication, and kept potential buyers away, prosecutors allege.

While Topacio hid his involvement, Koory and Jacky acted as the frontmen, according to charges. In February 2014, Topacio forwarded a $1.95 million offer from them, though they would be credited back $450,000 for renovations and closing costs. They officially bought the property a month later.

Afterward, Koory and Jacky formed CHJ Properties LLC and CHJ Food Services to manage the property. Topacio’s name was apparently added to a business license filed with the state later that year.

To obtain the SBA loan, the defendants told Coastal Community Bank they were opening a country-theme bar called the Stomping Grounds Restaurant, according to charging papers.

To gain credibility, Topacio allegedly forged a Seattle restaurateur’s name on documents, claiming she was a 19 percent owner of CHJ Properties. The woman later told investigators she had never heard of Stomping Grounds, but she had previously worked with Topacio.

The defendants never mentioned any plans for a cannabis shop when working with the bank, documents say.

The SBA, a federal agency, prohibits its loans from being used for anything involving marijuana.

The men were approved for the loan. To get disbursements from the bank, they falsified invoices, including ones from a coffee company and a contractor, according to the charges.

They allegedly funneled the money to the owner of Mari J’s Highway Pot Shop. The store opened in August 2015. As of December, it was still in operation.

Koory and Jacky are scheduled for arraignment at the end of the month.

Topacio has a court appearance set for May. He remains charged with first-degree theft and first-degree identity theft.

Zachariah Bryan: 425-339-3431; zbryan@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @zachariahtb.

Talk to us

More in Local News

The entrance to the new free COVID vaccination site at the Everett Mall on Monday, Jan. 17, 2022. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Free mass-vaccination site opens Tuesday at Everett Mall

Hundreds of appointments are up for grabs at the state-run site, which will offer initial doses, boosters and pediatric shots.

Michael Jensen, left, and Nathan Jensen, right, pick up trash in their encampment that they being forced to clear out of by Parks Department the near Silver Lake on Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Annual homeless count could shed light on pandemic’s impact

Snohomish County canceled its 2021 point-in-time count. Officials hope this year’s will bring clarity.

Marysville Pilchuck student Gianna Frank and Marysville firefighters bag puzzles and snacks in Marysville, Washington on January 17, 2022. (Isabella Breda / The Herald)
In Marysville, care packages filled in an MLK act of service

Some bags will go to seniors, some to survivors of domestic violence and some to those living with housing insecurity.

Index School (Index School District)
Voters to decide fate of critical school funding measures

Levies to pay for staff and programs are on the Feb. 8 ballot in districts across Snohomish County.

A crew member carries plywood to steathe a roof as of the Home Repair Service Program Friday morning in Brier, Washington on January 14, 2022. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Habitat for Humanity program helps Brier homeowners stay put

The nonprofit’s Home Repair Service program gave a senior couple a new roof — and hope.

Snohomish County Courthouse. (Herald file)
Lawmakers consider Snohomish County request for 2 more judges

It’s been 15 years since the Legislature approved a new Superior Court judge for the county.

NO CAPTION NECESSARY: Logo for the Cornfield Report by Jerry Cornfield. 20200112
Ports and potties, and a delay in long-term-care payroll tax

Here’s what’s happening on Day 8 of the 2022 session of the Washington Legislature.

A mail carrier delivers mail along Dubuque Road in Snohomish on Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2022. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Mail delays frustrate and perplex Snohomish residents

One woman waited two weeks for delivery. Then came “an avalanche of mail.” The Postal Service blames snow and staffing issues.

Sam Dawson administers a collection swab herself Thursday afternoon at the walk-up COVID testing center on Wetmore Ave in Everett, Washington on January 13, 2022. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Sketchy firm’s COVID-test sites shut down as questions mount

The Center for COVID Control will close an Everett site and others around the U.S. as officials take a closer look.

Most Read