CBSI: One Link is operating illegally
One Link Pacifica (OLP) scheme is operating illegally in the Solomon Islands says the Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI).
In a statement to The Solomon Islands Herald, Jimmy Sendersley, Director, Solomon Islands Financial Intelligence Unit (SIFIU) in the CBSI said that further to the Press Release that CBSI/SIFIU issued on 12th November 2019, the CBSI/SIFIU maintain its stance that:
- One Link is operating illegally
The business of taking in public deposits comes under banking business. Anyone carrying such operations is doing it illegally.
Financial Institution Act 1998 defines Banking business under section 2 (1);
“banking business” means –
(a) the business of accepting deposits of money from the public or members thereof, withdrawable or payable upon demand or after a fixed period or after notice, or any similar operation through the frequent sales or placement of bonds, certificates, notes or other securities, and the use of such funds, either in whole or in part, for loans or investments for the account and at the risk of the person doing such business; • (2) A person shall be deemed to be carrying on banking business if he advertises for or solicits deposits of money, or offers to sell or place bonds, certificates, notes or other securities and uses or intends to use the funds so required, with in whole or part, for advances, investments or in any other operation either authorized by law or by customary banking practice for the account and at the risk of the person placing such advertisement; or advertises, promotes or operates a pyramid selling scheme
• It is the regulatory and suspensory responsibility of the CBSI to assess and provide licenses to those who intend to carry out banking business
• Have to meet strict requirement as they will be taking in public’s money.
Section 2 (2);
• The CBSI has not given any license to the Promoters of One Link Pacific to operate as a finance business
2. One Link Pacifica is a Ponzi/Pyramid scheme currently operating in the country;
• A Ponzi scheme is a form of fraud that lures investors and pays profits to earlier investors with little risk.
• We have many of such schemes in the past years, though slightly different in the way they operate.
• They are unfair schemes – 4 individuals contribute to make up $1,000 dollars paid to the 1st person joining the scheme.
• For 100 members to get $1,000, there must be $250 investment contributions from 400 members.
3. From what we are aware of, since November to December 2019, there are lots of members that have joined the scheme.
• Most of the members (i.e. around 90%) joining the scheme are here in Honiara. Also, we heard that, there are some people out in the provinces that joined the scheme as well.
4. The operation of One Link Scheme is carried out through by the so called Mentors/Recruiters;
• by word of mouth, emails, social media etc. entice new members to join the scheme.
5. Some members that received their promised benefits in November and December 2019
• a good number of members are still currently waiting for when is their next payout.
6. From the current trend of things happening with One Link now, we can see there are signs that, the scheme is nearing collapsing and eventually will lead to natural death.
Current signs that we have observe and notice, and think that, One Link is nearing collapsing are:
- Delay of payments when matured after 30 days (1 month);
- Half Payments and request members to roll over their money/investment for another term (30 days or more);
- Enforcing other strict rules to deny members from getting their money invested in the scheme;
- Partial payments only on instalments and not as promised;
- Complaints from some members of the scheme who are yet to receive their promised monetary benefits;
- Some delaying tactics – alleging that funds will be coming from overseas for the scheme to cater for the next payout etc.
- Hiding of the scheme founder details (name, address)
- Introduction of new fees (mainly administration fee), which was not introduced at business inception
- Involvement of foreigners as shareholders or investors
- Blaming game (blaming FIs and regulators for delay or non-payments)
There are no funds kept for One Link in the CBSI or Overseas
- There are no link connecting One Link Pacific to any Organization or individuals overseas.
- There are no funds kept for One Link in any banks overseas.
- There are no funds kept for One Link in the CBSI.
What Complainants/victims should do:
- Currently nobody is reporting to Police
- Hoping to benefit so do not want to spoil their chances
- Soon people will start to complain
- Victims to take up cases with Police
- Can be charged under Penal Code, stealing, fraud, false pretense, conspiracy to procure payment and so forth.
CBSI would like to encourage the public to think first before investing in get-rich-quick schemes. Contact us should you like further advice or information about the One Link Pacifica or any other Fast money making schemes that are being promoted in the country.