NBI files criminal raps vs 3 Britons on boiler room operations in Cavite

MANILA-- Three British nationals are facing criminal complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) after they were involved in boiler room operations being conducted in the country targeting foreigners.

In a press conference held at NBI headquarters in Manila on Friday, NBI spokesman Ferdinand Lavin identified the three suspects as Andrew Robson, Graham Allan Bennet, and Dominic Whellams, who were all working in Plustel Solutions Inc. as consultant, trainer and IT expert, respectively.

Lavin said the three Britos were arrested on Tuesday at their office at Plustel Solutions Inc., 88 Building, Governor's Drive, Barangay Maduya, Carmona, Cavite.

Armed with a search warrant issued by Executive Judge Cynthia Marino-Ricablanca of the Fourth Judicial Region, Santa Cruz, Laguna, the operation was conducted jointly by the NBI's International Operations Division (IOD) and the Securities and Exchange Commission's Investor Protection Department (SEC-IPD).

Lavin said a previous verification showed that Plustel has no authority to offer securities.

There is no prior application for secondary license from the Commission, he said.

Lavin said they still cannot determine how much damage was caused by the operation.

We will determine it after an interview with the victims and a forensic examination (of the computers), Lavin told reporters.

The three Britons were facing a case for violation of the Securities Regulation Code in relation to the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.

The NBI also arrested 35 other Filipino personnel who were caught in the act of selling securities.

The NBI also brought in for investigation and verification 172 other individuals working as data miners, qualifiers and verifiers.

For his part, SEC Director Jose P. Aquino said that boiler room operation is a way of solicitation or selling of securities that is under high pressure sales tactics.

Aquino said the operation was conducted based on tips received by the SEC on Plustel illegal operation.

Plustel is operating in Maduya, Carmona in Cavite.

Prospective investors were usually chosen from engineering, oil and gas and manufacturing industries.

The victims were initially contacted over the telephone made by tele-qualifiers who assess prospective victim's financial capacity and willingness to invest.

Source: Philippines News Agency