The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a cease-and-desist order against R.L. Aggregates and Diversified Lending Group, Inc. for its “fraudulent” and “deceitful” scheme.
R.L. Aggregates was found soliciting investments from the public using a copy of its articles of incorporation that was altered to state that “the corporation shall direct, solicit, accept or take investments/placements from the public and shall issue investment contracts.”
“The SEC issued the order after finding that R.L. Aggregates has been enticing the public to invest in the company in exchange for guaranteed returns of 1% per day or 30% per month over a lock-in period of three months,” the regulator said in a statement on Friday.
The entity, which is registered with the commission, also as a certificate of authority to operate as a lending company. However, it does not have the secondary license needed to solicit investments from the public.
“Through the falsified articles of incorporation, R.L. Aggregates was able to conveniently offer and/or sell unauthorized securities from investors by means of fraud,” the commission said.
R.L. Aggregates promotes a scheme where investors may deposit as low as P1,000 and can allegedly earn P150 every 15 days or P1,900 monthly.
The SEC’s Enforcement and Investor Protection Department (EIPD) also found R.L. Aggregates falsely declaring that it is a parent company of cooperative and lending groups that cater to agriculture, small businesses, and small-scale mining in Masbate.
The commission also said the entity’s authorized capitalization amounted to only P1.5 million, making the business model unsustainable and “will likely cause grave or irreparable injury or prejudice to the investing public.”
The SEC released an advisory against R.L. Aggregates in February this year to warn investors that the entity is not authorized to collect investments from the public. The commission said it received a number of complaints and inquiries about the entity following the publication of the advisory.
As of March 2021, the commission said 21 complainants formally filed their complaint-affidavits with the EIPD.
“The company, along with its operators, directors, officers, representatives, salesmen, and agents, has likewise been prohibited from transacting any business involving funds in its depository banks, and from transferring, disposing, or conveying in any manner, any related assets to ensure the preservation of the assets of the investors,” the SEC said.
The cease-and-desist order also applies to R.L. Aggregates’ directors Roberto S. Llorente, Jennylyn M. Clemente, Patricip B. De Villa, Carlo S. Mamaril and Alvin C. Camanero.
It also covers the entity’s operators, officers, representatives, salesmen, and agents as well as other individuals acting under R.L. Aggregates’ behalf. The SEC named Ashley Reyes, Maya Gonzalez, Randy Dela Cruz and Kenneth Daniel Papa as part of the investment scheme.
“The SEC further enjoined the company to cease its internet presence relating to the transactions and investment scheme covered by the order,” the regulator said. — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte