Iranian officials have arrested key members of GodlQuest, a controversial network marketing scheme which has allegedly defrauded thousands of people around the world.
Airport police chief Ahmad Asadian said at least 120 GoldQuest agents have been arrested in Imam Khomeni International Airport (IKA) upon arrival from a company meeting in Bangkok, Thailand.
"There is a strong corruption case against these people in the Prosecutor's office in the northern city of Rasht," We tracked their flight number and arrested them as soon as their flight landed."
Asadian said the Tehran government will deal severely with those who use pyramid scams such as GoldQuest to disrupt national economy and take advantage of people with poor economic knowledge.
"These people say the company is a legal multilevel marketing business, whereas their activities are against the interests of Iranian people and economy." he said.
"In other words, their get-quick rich schemes amount to financial fraud and deception, which is a crime under Iranian law and those who commit would be severely punished," he said.
GoldQuest is a global network marketing company claiming to be engaged in selling coins and watches that are said to have numismatic value.
Network marketing companies, such as GoldQuest, work on the principle of Pyramid scheme, a non-sustainable business model that involves the exchange of money primarily for enrolling other people into the scheme.
GoldQuest, believed to be on of the largest economic corruption cases in the history of Iran's history, was banned in the country in 2005. Prosecutor's found the pyramid company's activities have to led to the exit of half a billion dollars from Iran.
Pyramid schemes have been banned in many countries including the United States, Great Britain, Canada, Malaysia, Norway, Australia, New Zealand, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Iran.
A recent poll in India suggested more than 90% of investors in MLM or pyramid schemes have lost their money.
(It is apt to mention here that the CID police of Andhra Pradesh, India, are preparing charge sheet against about 2800 people in the GoldQuest scam. Corporate Frauds Watch is proud to recall it was the first to file a criminal case against GoldQuest International in India and then the bubble burst.)