Wednesday, January 14, 2009
WEDNESDAY - 14 JANUARY 2009 - BANK NEGARA TEAM RAIDS PAPAR PREMISES OF LOCAL FIRM SAID COLLECTING DEPOSITS ILLEGALLY
BANK NEGARA TEAM RAIDS PAPAR PREMISES OF LOCAL FIRM SAID COLLECTING DEPOSITS ILLEGALLY
Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) raided the premises of a local firm yesterday in Papar for allegedly conducting deposit taking activities illegally. The raid followed complaints from the public about the company’s(Gemilang Mirza Sdn Bhd) deposit taking, BNM said yesterday. Documents and assets were seized from the company’s premises for further investigations.
The raid was carried out under Section 25(1) of the Banking and Financial Institutions Act (BAFIA) 1989 and Section 4(1) of the Anti Money Launding and Terrorist Funding Act (AMLATFA) 2001. Section 25(1) of BAFIA prohibits any individuals from procuring, taking or receiving deposit without a valid permit, while Section 4(1) of AMLATFA prohibits any individuals from involvement in or attempting to involve or conspire with money laundering activity. The offence under Section 25(1) of BAFIA carries a fine of not exceeding RM10 million or jail term not exceeding 10 year, or both, upon conviction whereas the offence under Section 4(1) of AMLATFA is punishable with a fine not exceeding RM5 million or a jail term not exceeding five years, or both, upon conviction.
BNM reminded the public to be wary of investment schemes being promoted through the Internet, telephone or seminar by individuals or companies that are not licensed or permitted to receive deposits or involve in foreign exchange transactions. This is to avoid from being cheated or losing their money, said BNM in a statement. BNM also stated that the list of licensed institutions allowed to receive deposits can be found in the BNM website at WWW.BNM.GOV.MY. Further information or advisory can be obtained from BNMTELELINK (Customers Information Centre) tel: 1-300- 88-5465;fax: 03-12741515; Email:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Recently, BNM was criticized by Consumers Association for Sabah and Labuan for not taking a serious action against the “get quick rich scheme” operators which are rampant in Sabah and Labuan.
Its President Datuk Patrick Sindu said that if immediate actions is not taken, many would fall victims to the scheme. He explained that there had been numerous reports in the State and Labuan, particularly from Beaufort and other small towns.
“There are even some companies which collect cash from the public, explaining it as investments, and promised that dividends will be paid on a weekly or monthly basis. It does not make sense. How can a company pay dividends within a short period? I do not believe that Bank Negara is not aware of such activities especially when the transactions are being done in the open, and that their so-called investors are mostly civil servants and individuals,” said Sindu, adding that normally the ‘investors’ would invest between RM500 and RM1,000, and the companies would quickly repay their investments to gain their trust.