Police Identify Meat Ponzi Scheme Suspect’s Assets
The National Police have identified 15 physical assets suspected to belong to a man believed to have swindled 125,00 people of Rp 6 trillion ($636 million) through a multilevel marketing scam involving meat supplies, a police officer said on Friday.
National Police spokesman Sr. Comr, Boy Rafli Amar said the assets were all in Tangerang and were suspected to belong to Jaya Komara, who was arrested in Purwakarta, West Java, on Tuesday.
“Yesterday, investigators, together with the suspects, traced the assets in a conventional way, taking him to Tangerang where he has a number of houses, shops and land. They number 15,” Boy said on Friday.
The police have already seized Rp 41.716 million in cash from the man, who used the cooperative business structure to lure investors.
Boy added that the police will cooperated with appraisers and public accountants to estimate the value of those assets.
“We will cross check them and if the assets were bought by the suspect using his customers’ money, we will of course seize them,” Boy said. He added that on Friday, investigators were questioning Jaya and his wife, identified as T.I., who has also been charged in the case.
They also questioned several witnesses from the Tangerang cooperatives office, and also Jaya’s driver.
“We will question all people mentioned by Jaya, but we will not yet announce their names,” he said, adding that there were three managers of the cooperative identified by Jaya.
Boy said that the police will ascertain whether the activities of the cooperative were real or fictitious.
“T.I. also worked [with her husband] and even owned a transport rental firm in Purwakarta worth Rp 3.5 billion,” the officer said, adding that police suspect the firm was laundering Jaya’s ill gotten wealth. “She also had a role in this activity.”
Jaya, who has been a fugitive since June, was still being questioned at the local district police station.
In January 2011, Jaya founded and then headed the Koperasi Langit Biru (Blue Sky Cooperative), which drew clients from meat suppliers and retailers and used a multi-level marketing system for its operations.
Police said that before it had even obtained a permit to operate, the cooperative was already drawing membership participation fees. The scheme is believed to have drawn Rp 6 trillion through a membership of at least 125,000 people.
Jaya then disappeared after the company failed to pay members their profit bonus due in June.
Boy said police did not know how many clients Jaya had recruited but that so far four plaintiffs had told police that they suffered losses totalling Rp 107 million because of Jaya’s cooperative scheme.