SEC probes 2 firms on investment schemes

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BAGUIO CITY – Two local companies that allegedly deviated from their approved mode of operations are now being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the practice of alleged Ponzi schemes that tend to defraud the public of their hear hard earned money.

Lawyer Annie Gonzales Tesoro, director of the SEC Baguio extension office, said Medra Direct Sales and Global Medra Resources that maintain offices in La Trinidad and Baguio are duly registered with the SEC and were subsequently issued authority to conduct direct sales but are not allowed to engage in the solicitation of money investments from the public considering the absence of their secondary licenses.

“It does not mean that when a company is SEC registered, it follows that their current mode of operation is legal because there are many companies who reportedly deviate from their approved mode of operation just to justify the solicitation of money 8investments from the public. We have to continue investigating the mode of operation of the two companies,” Tesoro stressed.

Initial reports reaching the SEC Baguio office showed some of the founders of Medra Direct Sales, Inc. and Global Medra Resources are allegedly the same persons who were the reported organizers or facilitators of FrancSwiss in the country.. The said company was reportedly registered in the website and operated its fraudulent activities by posting advertisements in the internet enticing people to invest their money, mostly in dollars and will in turn earn high interests.

However, FancSwiss later turned out to be a reported investment scam and many people from different parts of the country, especially Baguio and Benguet, lost their hard earned money to the operators or facilitors of its branches.

Sometime in the third quarter of 2014, some of the individuals linked to the FrancSwiss, together with other individuals, who names were temporarily withheld, organized a new business known as Medra Direct Sales Corp and Global Medra Resources. The alleged modos operandi of the group is to reportedly entice their innocent victims to invest their money with a promise of return of investment in one to six months and that the same will earn a monthly profit or interest of 20 percent or even more depending on their promotional strategies.

Furthermore, reliable sources disclosed that investors of Global Medra Resources, Inc. in Baguio and La Trinidad alone already reached some 300 individuals with investments amounting to a total of approximately P300 to P500 million.

Tesoro disclosed the mere fact that the companies are soliciting money investments and with promise of high interests could already fall under the Ponzi schemes although further investigation must be done to gather pieces of evidence against the declared owners of the two corporations.

A Ponzi scheme is defined as soliciting money investments from the public with a promise of high returns of profit through high interest in a short period of time.

As of presstime, the officials of the two corporations could not be reached for comment in relation to their supposed operations whether or not it falls under the SEC defined Ponzi shcemes.

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