A newly opened investment scheme located in Roldan Village in Barangay Ma-a was shuttered by the police yesterday after the company failed to show a business permit and license to operate in the city.
Brig. Gen. Marcelo Morales, the police regional director, led the operation to padlock the place.
Janet Garcia, who introduced herself as an investor of the Jogle marketing, was caught by surprise when uniformed police officers arrived in the area to inspect their documents and permits.
She presented to Morales some of the documents from the Department of Trade and Industry. When the regional director asked her if they have a barangay clearance she answered that it was underway.
“We just opened, sir, but we have the application for the permit,” she added.
“The application is not a permit, so you are not allowed to operate,” Morales responded. “You have to close.”
However, she explained that a staff at the Business Bureau told them they have a two-month probation period where they could operate temporarily. She also claimed they have a permit for their main branch in Tagum City.
But the police did not accept the explanation because they need the legal documents.
“So if you don’t have permit, you are not allowed while you are still applying while you are operational, it’s not allowed,” the regional police director further said. “You are issuing receipts without a permit so your activity is suspicious.”
Garcia, meanwhile, insisted that their products are registered and they are not an investment scam. However, they will close down the office for the meantime while their permits are on process.
Garcia said they have just started the operation on Tuesday.
“The documents presented to us were just applications for barangay clearance, business permit. They are not allowed yet to engage in any transactions,” he said. “They have a Tagum permit but it is not recognized because they must procure a specific permit here in the city branch.”
“We will monitor this establishment until they could procure permits,” he added.
Meanwhile, in an interview with Annie Tapiri, a meat section owner and a resident of the said area, said they were told by Jogle that the money they invest will increase four times in just 45 days.
“I invested P15,000 for my child yesterday,” she said. “Our friend also joined with us. I was recruited.”
Morales advised Tapiri that if the company is legitimate, there are procedures on how to claim back the money.
In a separate interview with Garcia, she explained that they received no complaints since they started operating in 2016.
“It is unfair for us,” she said. “When we branched out, we renovated the area. Our registration is legit with DTI which is national, then we have a certification of registration and business permit from our main (branch) in Tagum in 2016.”
She said they shouldn’t be lumped with the other investment schemes because they have legitimate products to show and sell.
Garcia also clarified that investors should not expect quadruple returns every time. The profits will still depend on how many products are sold.
Police monitoring investment scams
Morales said they have intensified their monitoring of get-rich schemes operating in the city without the necessary permits to operate. He said they will implement the cease and desist order that issued by the Department of Interior and Local Government.
“We will also check all investment schemes and companies involve if their operation is legitimate by checking if they have secured the necessary documents and permits from the different government agencies,” he said.
“Because as of now, the PNP cannot make arrests or conduct any police operation in the absence of complainant and absence of any warrant of arrest against these companies so we are just in the prevention aspect,” he added.
“We cannot arrest without legal basis,” he said.