Saturday, 18 June 2011

Members of Barbados Underground are struggling to inform and protect their fellow citizens from 'MLM' racketeers

As we all now know, Bernie Madoff was a dangerous and manipulative sociopath who ran a closed-market swindle dissimulated as an 'investment opportunity'. He took his victims' money and steadfastly pretended that he was investing it for them on the stock market and always returning profits. In reality, Madoff wasn't really making any stock market trades (profitable or unprofitable). He was lying. Classically, he relied on more and more ill-informed victims joining his fraud in order to hide and sustain his vast criminal enterprise. For years, all that the dunces with diplomas at the SEC had to do to uncover Madoff's racket, was go and examine the stock market records, but apparently they preferred to accept Madoff's own reality-inverting version of his unlawful activities.
Last week I was speaking to an experienced American financial investigator who is currently looking at one particular 'MLM business opportunity' racket which, for many years, has been hidden behind a US-registered public company, and which, as a consequence of recent reforms (introduced in the light of the Bernie Madoff fiasco), might finally face a US Securities and Exchange Commission enquiry. Apparently, SEC officials are now under legal obligation to act on any reasonable complaints which they receive. In the case of Mr. Madoff, senior SEC officials were given a detailed and timely explanation of the absurdly-obvious Ponzi scheme he was running, but they refused to take any action and this chronic US regulatory failure gave Madoff 's economic alchemy credibility. 
Personally, I am of the opinion that key US SEC officials (most of whom are lawyers) have already demonstrated that they were either far too open to corruption (and should be facing racketeering charges themselves), or far too stupid to be held to account. Since key officials at this federal government agency recently failed to do their job and identify the most-elementary form of dissimulated closed-market swindle (even when it was clearly explained to them), what chance have they now got of comprehending that 'MLM business opportunity' fraud is an essentially identical crime, but with countless millions of victims around the globe? That said, for years, at least one US-registered public company has been allowed to raise capital unlawfully in the USA by peddling shares in a vast criminal enterprise which has been presented externally as a lawful 'MLM business opportunity'. Again, all that the dunces with diplomas at the SEC have to do to uncover this racket, is go and examine the financial records. Surely, this time they won't prefer to accept the reality-inverting version of dangerous and manipulative and sociopaths.  
There are, in fact, many well-informed people in America who are perfectly aware that 'MLM' is a global criminogenic phenomenon, spawned in the USA and which makes Mr. Madoff look like a small-time operator. Indeed, the experienced American financial investigator whom I spoke to, offered the insightful opinion that 'MLM' is America's home-grown version of the 'Nigerian Bank' scam and that the US State Dept. should be collecting intelligence from countries like India to determine the full-extent of the damage 'MLM' has caused. Perhaps a good place to start would be on America's own door-step; for it's not just in distant countries like India where 'business opportunity' frauds are a problem. These cancers have been allowed to gnaw their way into small Caribbean States like Trinidad and Barbabados. Fortunately, in the face of government inaction (and a mysterious lack of interest from the mainstream media), a few decent individuals are struggling to inform, and protect, their fellow citizens.
Corporate Frauds Watch salutes the efforts of Barbados Underground.
David Brear (copyright 2011)

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