SEC flags Multi Fortune Stake’s investment scheme

THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has warned the public about Multi Fortune Stake for soliciting investments without registration and for operating a “Ponzi-like” investment scheme.

“Multi Fortune Stake is not authorized to solicit investments from the public as it is not registered with the commission and cannot therefore secure prior registration and/or license to solicit investments,” the SEC said in an advisory.

The regulator said it received information that individuals or a group of persons representing Multi Fortune Stake headed by a certain Ricky Galon have been soliciting investments from the public.

The firm entices the public to invest with guaranteed total earnings of 100% in 30 days through its plans, which promise that an investor will earn 25% of his investment every six days until the 24th day, and on the last sixth day, the income will be 100% of his investment.

“Clearly, Multi Fortune Stake is offering a double-your-money scheme in just 30 days… please be reminded that the offering and sale of such securities in the form of investment contracts using the ‘Ponzi Scheme’ is fraudulent and unsustainable and is not a registrable security,” the commission said.

In its advisory, the SEC said it does not issue a permit to offer and sell securities to the public for those engaged in the said business or scheme.

“In view thereof, the public is advised not to invest or stop investing in any investment scheme being offered by Multi Fortune Stake as well as to any other entities having the same or similar schemes and to exercise caution in dealing with any individuals or group of persons soliciting investments or recruiting investors for and on behalf of [the firm],” the advisory read.

Those who act as salesmen, brokers, dealers or agents or claim to act as such of Multi Fortune Stake in selling or convincing people to invest in the investment scheme may be prosecuted and held criminally liable, according to the SEC.

Penalties include a maximum fine of P5 million or up to 21 years of imprisonment.

“Also, those who invite or recruit others to join or invest in such ventures or offer investment contracts or securities to the public may incur criminal liability, or otherwise be sanctioned or penalized accordingly,” the SEC added. — Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson