SA investors lose money in alleged Internet trading scam


South Africans were among investors from around the world who lost money in an alleged Internet trading scam that operated for more than two years from a massive call centre in the Philippines.

Complaints by victims led police to raid the call centre on Wednesday and arrest 482 employees.


The Manila Times reported that those arrested were “operators and occupants of the International Branding Development Marketing Inc.”

The Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP-ACG) said that potential victims were convinced to invest stocks in a fake London company or Bitcoin. The suspects then obtained credit card and banking information from their victims.

One of the victims‚ Australian Jan Theresa Bedggood‚ said she had invested $250 but was later asked for an additional $10‚000. When she opted not to‚ the suspects emptied her accounts.

(PNP-ACG) director superintendent Marni Marcos said that the arrests stemmed from reports and complaints from Australia and South Africa.

Video footage posted by CNN Philippines on Twitter showed police enter the massive call centre‚ which had about 1‚000 employees spread across three buildings‚ with a search warrant.

Some of the victims travelled from South Africa to lay complaints with police in the Philippines.


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