One more multi-level marketing scam surfaces in Erode district

September 29, 2012 02:09 am | Updated July 01, 2016 02:01 pm IST - ERODE:

Persons who alleged fraud by a private finance company scheme are waiting at the Office of Superintendent of Police in Erode on Friday. Photo: M. Govarthan

Persons who alleged fraud by a private finance company scheme are waiting at the Office of Superintendent of Police in Erode on Friday. Photo: M. Govarthan

One more multi-level marketing scam involving several crores of rupees was brought to light in Erode district on Friday when a group of persons who invested their money in the ponzi scheme of a private finance firm submitted complaints of cheating to the police.

The persons, all residents of Gobichettipalayam, Punjai Puliyampatti and Sathyamangalam blocks, claimed that they had invested funds ranging from Rs. 50,000 to Rs. 2 lakh in the Kanpur-based multi-level marketing company - Fine Indisales Private Limited, in the hope of making quick and handsome returns.

It was said that the firm offered 11 per cent interest on the sum invested and bonus plus commission if a person brought in new investors.

For instance, the firm offered around Rs. 22,000 as monthly interest for a deposit of Rs. 2 lakh. The deposit will be returned in three years, besides the bonus plus commission for bringing in new depositors.

Lured by the get-rich-quick scheme, hundreds of people in Gobichettipalayam, Punjai Puliyampatti and Sathyamangalam invested in the firm. S. Muthukumar, of Venganaickanpalayam in Sathyamangalam taluk, invested Rs. 2 lakh in June this year. “The firm promised to provide an interest of Rs. 21,000 for my deposit every month. But it has given only Rs. 10,000 as interest in the first month. I contacted the distributors, who promoted the scheme in our area. But they did not respond,” he said.

The firm reportedly collected huge amounts of money from other persons, particularly in the rural areas such as Gobichettipalayam and Sathyamangalam. It had even appointed distributors to promote the schemes and collect money.

The distributors were offered lucrative commission for collecting deposits, investors said. The firm operated in different names, Fine Futures, Good Way and Way to Success. But all the money went to the Fine Indisales Private Limited, investors alleged.

Interestingly, police officials in the district came to know about the MLM firm and its fraudulent practices four months ago. Police launched an awareness campaign to ask people not to invest their hard-earned money in the firm. In Punjai Puliyampatti, police made announcements in many villages using tom-tom. “As we did not receive any complaints, we tried our best to warn the people. But, lured by the attractive returns, many persons have fallen prey to the ponzi schemes of the firm,” a senior police official said.

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