BBOM owner and leaders reported for crimes
Despite having it’s assets frozen well over a year ago and late last year Brazil’s Ministry of Finance concluding BBOM is a Ponzi scheme, the owner and top investors of the scheme remained at large.
Now, some fourteen months after the scheme had its assets frozen, regulators in Brazil have finally “reported” five individuals.
The Federal Prosecutors Office in the Brazilian state of São Paulo has reported João Francisco de Paulo (owner of BBOM) and Paulo Ricardo Figueiró, Ednaldo Alves Bispo, Sérgio Luís Yamagi Tanaka and Fabiano Marculino Montarroyos (believed to be top investors in the scheme).
In a statement, Federal Prosecutors claim that
the accused have attempted to hide assets acquired from criminal activity by depositing funds into third party accounts. These funds were illegally obtained from consumers associated with BBom.
It is estimated that one million people have invested in the business, whose revenue was R$ 2 billion ($842,992,660 USD).
As part of their case, Federal Prosecutors also revealed that just days before BBOM assets were frozen, de Paulo transferred $400,000 out of Brazil. The transfers were made in four individual transactions, each marked as an “overseas investment”.
The purpose of concealing the illegal origin of the funds is clear. Such transactions were made because the accused sought to hide and make it difficult to track stolen investors’ money.
De Paulo (right) and friends are now facing charges of ‘crimes against the capital market, the financial system, the economy and money laundering.‘
The charge of money laundering is particularly pertinent, seeing as it was only a few months ago de Paulo launched InterBBOM.
Trading on the BBOM brand, InterBBOM is an obvious attempt to resurrect the BBOM Ponzi scheme. This time around, de Paulo has ditched the GPS tracker ruse and replaced it with mobile apps.
InterBBOM affiliates invest $185 to $927 on the expectation of >100% ROIs, paid out of newly invested funds.
Whether Brazilian regulators will include InterBBOM in their current criminal case is as of yet unclear. Potential complications with Brazilian regulators targeting the scheme are evident with the scheme’s purported registration in Singapore and use of Chinese banking channels.
On the other hand, throwing João Francisco de Paulo and a few of his top investors in jail might quickly remedy that.
If convicted, the Federal Prosecutor’s Office is requesting
that the five accused are sentenced to pay compensation to the victims in the amount of approximately R $ 2 billion – equivalent to the total revenues of the company.
As for jail time, Andrey Borges de Mendonça, an attorney with the Federal Prosecutors Office, was interviewed by iG and stated that
(There) are numerous penalties provided if the accused are convicted.
The fact that the case involves large amounts (of stolen funds) can increase the penalties handed down, says the prosecutor.
However, only the crime of money laundering will send those involved to prison, with the charge carrying a sentence of up to 12 years.
iG got in contact with BBOM’s attorneys, who in response to the Public Prosecutor’s charges stated
We trust that all defendants appearing in the case are innocent.
They are now calmly awaiting the proper notifications before presenting any defenses.
As to the hundreds of thousands of dollars de Paulo laundered offshore just days before BBOM’s assets were initially frozen,
“The said financial transaction refers to absolutely legal offshore transactions, following the FX Central Bank rules.”
According to the company, “such remittances has nothing to do with the business of BBom.”