KUALA LUMPUR: From JJPTR to Monspace, and weak enforcement by the authorities, Malaysia appears to have become a safe haven for investment schemes which are allegedly a cover for scams.
Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said this, as he highlighted the plight faced by a large group of people who claim to have invested in a scheme allegedly operated by Century Dynasty chairman Stanley Goh Teik Keng.
Speaking at a press conference today, Lim said over 100 police reports have been lodged since early last year against the company and Goh, who holds a “Datuk Seri” title.
“Case after case (of investment scams) have been exposed. And the victims are no longer limited to Malaysians only.
“Our country has become a safe haven for Ponzi schemes, and it’s because the authorities don’t take action,” Lim said.
One of the alleged victims, Khor Guat Hoon, told reporters present in front of Century Dynasty’s building here that she and her family members had invested with the company after being promised a 3.2% return every month, for three years.
The company, she said, claimed to be investing in paddy fields and coal mine projects, among others, in Indonesia and Cambodia.
“We were impressed by what the company had to offer, and we trusted them because they showed us the paddy fields and the coal mines, and a lot of Datuks were also investing with the company,” Khor said.
But after investing over RM600,000 in 2014, Khor said she had received only one payment of RM9,600 in August the same year.
For almost two years she waited and tried time and time again to get back her money from the company, but to no avail. In February 2016, she decided to lodge a police report against Goh and his company.
“No action has been taken against him or the company and this frustrates us. Especially since he’s still allowed to go in and out of the country freely,” she said, adding that she had asked Lim and other DAP MPs to help her file a civil suit against Goh.
Lee Siew Chow met Goh back in 2014. He said Goh had claimed to own 1,000 hectares of paddy fields in Cambodia, and urged him to invest in them.
Like Khor, Lee too had only received one payment which was made in September the same year.
“A friend who introduced us showed me a magazine article which listed Goh as one of the top 50 businessmen in the world. So I trusted him and invested RM100,000 in the company.”
He also said that after repeated attempts to get his money back, Goh, in 2014, promised to return his capital, but had yet to do so.
“In February 2016, a group of us lodged a police report against him.
“We then went to the commercial crime department at the federal police headquarters in Bukit Aman, and was told by a deputy superintendent of police that he will take over the case.
“But we’ve received no updates so far,” Lee said.
Genie Yee had also met with Bukit Aman’s commercial crime department last year, over the alleged scam.
She however, claimed that an officer she met there told her that based on their checks, none of the cases reported were actually pursued.
According to Yee, checks by her and other victims found that there were reports lodged against Goh and Century Dynasty in other countries, including Singapore and Brunei.
Seputeh MP Teresa Kok and Selangor DAP committee member Ronnie Liu, who were also present this morning, said it was high time the authorities take serious note of the various investment scams in the country.
“I see news of this every day. I believe if the authorities want to do something about it, they can,” Kok said.
“We will bring this matter up in the next Dewan Rakyat sitting, and I hope the government can show that they’ve done something to address this problem.”
Liu said that Goh was also a director of another investment company, alleging that it was also a scam.
“If the authorities don’t stop him now, he will open more companies and continue to scam the public. It’s not about the victims being greedy.
“But with the economic pressure today, they are of course looking for other ways to make an income.
“And the duty of the government is to protect the interests of the people,” he said.
FMT is attempting to contact representatives from the Century Dynasty group.