Source : Khmer Times
About 300 people from 11 provinces gathered at Prime Minister Hun Sen’s cabinet near Wat Botum pagoda yesterday to ask for help in their ongoing dispute with Empire Big Capital Limited, an investment company that cheated thousands of victims out of nearly $60 million.
In May last year, three government departments joined forces to combat the Ponzi scheme, after the interior, economy and justice ministries received complaints from 7,430 people across Cambodia.
Teng Saroeun, a representative of Investment Consultant Association and Empire Big Capital Limited, and Teng Makara, Mr Saroeun’s younger brother, were arrested in June.
In 2015, authorities arrested several EBC staff for fraud, five of whom received prison sentences of between nine months and two years.
Those accused of being behind the fraud were Malaysian Tan Tze Chin, alias Sean Tan, the chief operating officer of EBC, based in Hong Kong and China, and Cambodians Huot Sovann, director of the Asean Instrument Foundation, Chi Gosaly, director of ICA, and Long Sambath, president of BN Investment Advisory. All four remain at large.
Sam Vuthy, who lost $50,000 to the scheme, said yesterday that he had not seen any results after filing a complaint over his losses more than a year ago.
“Prime Minister Hun Sen please help us with this case because we believe that if you make a statement about it, action will be taken by authorities,” said Mr Vuthy.
Sar Reth, who lost $28,000, said he believed the company was legitimate because it often held large seminars at hotels that were never shuttered by authorities.
“The company said they had legal permission, so I decided to invest,” he said. “When we invested, we got our ten percent return for the first few months, but then nothing, so we have come to protest to get help in getting compensation.”
Pal Chandara, a representative for Prime Minister Hun Sen’s cabinet, said this was the second time victims have asked for the premier’s help and noted that authorities were already working on the case.
“The important thing is that these people need to cooperate with prosecutors,” he said. “First, they need to provide any documents the prosecutors need and second, they need to help find assets that belong to the perpetrators so the court can seize them and help compensate the victims.”