Mindanao lawmaker files bill to stop pyramiding scams

July 16, 2009 9:23 am 

MANILA, July 16 — A Mindanao lawmaker has filed a bill at the House of Representatives aimed to reduce, if not prevent, the proliferation of the pyramiding scams.

Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, author of House Bill 6094, on Thursday said thousands of people have already been victimized by some unscrupulous individuals and criminal syndicates who are using the pyramiding scheme in their illegal activities.

He cited the pyramiding scheme of Rose Baladjaya, the SM Fund, Franc Swiss, Performance Investment Products Corp. (PIPC), Royal Manchester and the Legacy Group of Companies, which involves billions of pesos.

Rodriguez said in the case of the Legacy Group, the victims were lowly sectors like teachers, soldiers, police, workers, farmers and other low-income earners.

He said bouncing checks were used by persons engaged in pyramid scams as payment for the recruited investors either as a return of their investments or a grant of commission.

He added that the victims of these pyramid scams had difficulty in filing cases for bouncing checks because signatories or drawers of the checks issued are unknown.

"This is especially true for those checks issued by corporations where no names are provided," said Rodriguez.

At present, he said the Negotiable Instruments Law, which governs the issuance of checks, does not require the name of the signatory or drawer to appear on the face of the checks.

The Cagayan de Oro solon also cited the Batas Pambansa Blg. 22, otherwise known as "An Act Penalizing the Making or Drawing and Issuance of a Check without Sufficient Funds or Credit," which was signed into law to curb the issuance of bouncing checks.

Rodriguez said HB 6094 requires the signatories or drawers of checks to legibly print his or her name before signing and issuing such checks, thereby revealing in no uncertain terms who could be held liable for violation of Batas Pambansa 22. (PNA)

/V3/LGI/

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