P100-M scam victims surface | Inquirer News

P100-M scam victims surface

/ 10:55 PM October 23, 2013

CAMP PACIANO RIZAL, Laguna—More victims of what turned out to be another Ponzi scheme rushed to the police station in Sta. Rosa City, Laguna, weeks after the arrest of the alleged scam mastermind.

Among them was a 65-year-old retired school teacher from Calamba City, who was duped into paying P250,000, when promised a managerial position in the company. Others were ordinary people and small businessmen, who invested from P500,000 to P1.2 million in Global Money Unlimited Inc.

Global Money is a lending and insurance company whose old business name, Caceres Lending Investor Co., expired in 1999. It was founded by Edmundo Caceres Jr. along with four others charged in a case of syndicated estafa.


Caceres, 38, was arrested on Oct. 9 in his home in Sta. Rosa City, and another suspect, Celia Romero, the following day. Company employees, Marlon Caceres (relation to Edmundo was not established), Celso Cabrera and Analiza Brendia remained at large.


The arrests were made after a Regional Trial Court in Biñan City, Laguna, issued the warrant for 10 counts of estafa worth P100 million.

But “they definitely got more than that,” said P03 Joseph Balmaceda, who was handling the case.

“There are other (estafa) cases awaiting (court) resolutions and more complainants coming here. You could just imagine how thick the documents we carry to court inquests,” he said by phone on Tuesday.

Balmaceda said investors were promised “big returns” for their investment—a minimum membership fee of P1,000. Members then become eligible for as much as P50,000 in loans or insurance packages of up to P500,000.

“But members could earn money by recruiting the downlines. You get P500 commission for every recruit you or your downline makes,” he said.

Balmaceda said the company also offered handsome incentives to those who invest more, such as making them branch managers in the company’s offices in Pagsanjan, Laguna, or in Batangas City.


“Some of the victims went as far as selling their properties,” Balmaceda said.

But no branch of Global Money opened in Pagsanjan or Batangas in 2011, Balmaceda said, quoting the complainants.

On March 2012, 17 investors filed complaints at the National Bureau of Investigation when the company stopped paying them for their recruits.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in April 2012 also ordered the business closed and warned against Global Money.

Balmaceda said Caceres once worked in a marketing company before he started a company of his own.

Originally from Biñan City in Laguna, Caceres lived in an upscale subdivision in Sta. Rosa City. “He must be rich if he could afford his own bodyguards,” Balmaceda added.

But some of the investors, a couple from La Union who refused to be named, said they did not know much about Caceres.

The husband said the company did not have actual products to sell but banked only on Caceres’ “sweet words.”

“All these came too late. The SEC, for instance, should have been monitoring businesses at the onset of their operations and not after a lot of people have already lost their money,” he said.

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“My wife and I are moving on now. We are leaving it up to God,” he said.

TAGS: News, Ponzi scheme, Pyramid Scam, Regions

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