PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, NBI ordered to crack down on investment scammers

PRESIDENT Duterte yesterday ordered the Philippine National Police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group and the National Bureau of Investigation to crack down on well-organized groups engaged in multi-million peso investment scams which have victimized tens of thousands of Filipinos including law enforcers and other government employees.

Main target of the presidential order is the Surigao del Sur-based religious corporation Kapa-Community Ministry International Inc. (Kapa).

“Kayong mga CIDG, kayong pulis – the special investigating teams there… pati NBI ) that is pyramiding. When it is good to be true, it is fraud,” the President said in an interview over Pastor Apollo Quiboloy’s program “Give Us This Day.

There were confirmed reports that Kapa is soliciting investments from the public in exchange for a 30 percent monthly return.

“Biro mo yung P100,000 will earn P30,000 a month?! Yung Bangko Sentral nga, di mabigay tres lang na porsyento. Annually ha?! Walang tao dito, walang bangko yung maski Bank of America can afford to pay you P30,000 every month for your P100,000,”the President said as he instructed the NBI and the PNP-CIDG to shut down these companies and bring their owners to jail.

The Journal Group earlier reported the presence of highly-irregular investment scams in the country, some of them believed being run or protected by police and government officials, that have been threatening to disrupt the police organization prompting officials to warn their men and other would-be investors to stay away from these hoax schemes or lose their hard-earned savings or loans.

Activities of these investment syndicates have been detected in different parts of Mindanao, Visayas and now Metro Manila and other parts of Luzon since last year prompting the PNP leadership headed by Director General Oscar D. Albayalde to provide tips on how to identify these scams.

Here is the basic: They promise you high returns at low or no-risk.  They give you commissions if you refer a friend. They assure you that capital is guaranteed. They claim that they have “strong” track record.  They pressure you with “limited” time-discount price offers. They impress you with outstanding testimonials. If the offer appears too good to be true, it’s not true. Thus, Think, Examine, Study.’

Police Regional Office 12 director Brigadier General Eliseo T. Rasco has renewed his appeal to Central Mindanao residents to be wary of a fraudulent investment scam which is believed to have duped thousands of victims  including PNP officers and men of billions of pesos worth of their hard-earned money or loans.

The official said that these investment scams lure even the most sophisticated investors, using the deceiving and alluring appeal of outsized returns or secured and guaranteed pay-outs ranging from 30 percent up to 400 percent per month.    

He referred particularly to the Police Paluwagan Movement or PPM which was shut down last March after it scammed many local police officers and personnel of an estimated billions of pesos.

Rasco said that looking at these companies’ business records, most are registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Based on reports, these scammers solicit millions of pesos from victims for purported investments in a variety of projects and companies.

Last month, Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo M. Año ordered the PNP leadership to immediately probe the involvement of three ranking PRO12 officers in an alleged P2 billion investment scam.