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Suspected scam firms could still be online

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By Calvin Cordova

CEBU CITY—The offices of two companies suspected of investment fraud may have been shut down, but they could still be doing business online, police said.

In separate raids last Tuesday, police found 147 computer sets in the office of Organico in Cebu City, and four in Ada’s office in Mandaue City.

The offices had been abandoned even before the raiders arrived.

Col. Lito Patay, chief of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in Central Visayas (CIDG), said Organico Agribusiness Ventures and Ada Farm Agriventures could still be operating online.

“Based on the evidence that we recovered like receipts, vouchers and Internet routers, there are indications that they transact online. There were also notices indicating that the payouts will be delivered to the houses of the investors,” said Patay.

The CIDG has tapped the Anti-Cybercrime Group to check possible online transactions of Organico and Ada.

An investor of Organico, who asked not to be named, told Manila Bulletin that they were asked by their “upline” that they will continue to receive their payouts.

“We were told not to panic since we can meet in hotels for the distribution of payouts,” the investor said.

Patay said cases will be filed against the respondents named in the search warrants used in raids.

Elmer Peniere, operations manager, and Dino Estrosas, company agent, were the subjects in the Ada raid. Cerrone Posas, the supposed owner, was the subject in the Organico raid.

“These are clear investment scams. They don’t have permits from the Securities and Exchange Commission to solicit investment,” said Patay.

Patay also called on the investors not to begrudge authorities for running after the companies.

“No one is complaining now because the pay-ins can still accommodate the payouts. We are hoping that the public will stop patronizing this kind of schemes. The government is taking actions to stop these scams. There is no legitimate business that can offer a 30 percent return,” said Patay.

Ada enticed investors by purchasing a minimum of 10 chicks for P500 with the capital earning 80 percent profit after 60 days.

In Organico, an investor has to buy a piglet for P3,600 and was guaranteed a return of P6,000 after 90 days.

Brig. Gen. Debold Sinas, Central Visayas police chief, said investigators will make an assessment after the raids in Ada, Organico and Kapa Community Ministry International.

“We have raided three but SEC had announced that there are 12 companies running investment scams. We will continue to monitor,” Sinas said.

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