THE Enforcement and Investor Protection Department of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued another set of advisories against several entities soliciting investments from the public without the necessary licenses.

The following corporations have operations within SEC-Davao’s Area of Responsibility (Davao Region, Soccsksargen, Cotabato City and Maguindanao Province):

1. Wellcons Unlimited Systems, Inc. (Wellcons)

2. Astrazion International, Astrazion Noble Task Community Foundation, and Astrazion Global Holdings, Inc.

Wellcons Unlimited Systems, Inc. (Wellcons), with principal office located at P15A, National Highway, Bagontaas, City of Valencia, Bukidnon and headed by MERARI PAILAGAO, is enticing prospective individuals to join the company through the “binary system” and “pangakabuhayan system.”

The “pangkabuhayan system” is actually the “double-your-money” scheme of the company where the package/s availed of by the member will earn P3,000, P5,000, and P10,000 for Bronze (worth P1,500), Silver (worth P2,500), and Gold (worth P10,000), respectively. However, the guaranteed income of P3,000, P5,000, and P10,000 shall be given to the investor based on a daily rewards of P15, P25, or P50 depending on the package availed of, which total guaranteed income could be earned within more or less six months.

Investor-members belonging to the company’s Top 20,000 members shall also be entitled to Profit Sharing equivalent to 20 percent of the company’s earnings to be distributed among them, Loyalty Bonus equivalent to 10 percent of the company’s earnings shall be distributed among the Top 5,000 members, and Global Pool Reward equivalent to 5 percent of the company’s earnings shall be distributed among the Top 1,000 members.

Wellcons lures the public to invest in their scheme mainly through referral system designed to encourage its members to recruit others in order to earn income instead of selling on the merits of its products.

The scheme of Wellcons is a hybrid of a pyramiding and a ponzi scheme. The Pyramiding scheme involves securities because for payment of a sum of money, often nominal, the investor participates in a recruitment scheme that promises a stream of profits. The scheme that requires recruitment in a two-pronged structure takes the form of a pyramid, one that grows wider at the bottom, and thrives with the supply of new recruits to the scheme. Here, the recruitment fees collected from new recruits are used to pay the recruiting commissions to earlier recruits.

Astrazion International, Astrazion Noble Task Community Foundation, and Astrazion Global Holdings, Inc., on the other hand, is luring the public to invest their hard-earned money by promising them lucrative earnings of 3 percent daily depending on the amount of the AZNT token package availed of for a period of 100 days. The minimum amount AZNT token packages range from its “Starter package” amounting to $100 or (P5,000) up to “Double Platinum/Titanium” package amounting to $10,000 or (P500,000).

The income generated by Astrazion does not appear to be derived from viable business sources but solely from the purchases by the public of an unregistered “AZNT Tokens” being paid by its current investors and by the newly recruited members.

The public is reminded that any offer or promise of ridiculous rates of return with little or no risk similar to the scheme of Astrazion is an indication of a possible “Ponzi Scheme” which is defined as an investment fraud that involves the payment of purported returns to existing investors from funds contributed by the new investors.

Per record of the Commission, Wellcons and Astrazion although registered with the Commission, have no secondary license to solicit, accept or take investments/placements from the public nor to issue investment contracts and other forms of securities defined under Section 3 of the Securities Regulation Code (SRC) since it has not secured prior registration and/or license from the Commission as prescribed under Sections 8 and 28 of the Securities Regulation Code (SRC).

Those who act as salesmen, brokers, dealers or agents in selling, convincing or recruiting people to invest in illegal schemes may be prosecuted and held criminally liable under Section 28 of the Securities Regulation Code (SRC) and penalized with a maximum fine of P5,000,000 or a penalty of 21 years of imprisonment or both.

Furthermore, the names of all those involved will be reported to the Bureau of Internal Revenue so that the appropriate penalties and/or taxes be correspondingly assessed.

For the complete list of advisories, you may visit https://www.sec.gov.ph/investors-education-and-information/advisories/.

The public is urged to report unauthorized investment schemes through email at epd@sec.gov.ph. (PR)