CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – A businessman accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of engaging in a financial scheme has denied on Saturday (April 18) that his establishment is into illegal activities.
In a radio interview, Joshua Calderon, chief executive officer of Jocals688 Beauty and Wellness Products Trading Inc., said his business is a networking company legally registered with the SEC and is into selling Jocals Gluta Glow Powdered Drink Mix, Jocals Green Coffee, and Jocals Vitamin C.
According to SEC, Jocals688 was registered with the commission on Oct. 9, 2019, under company registration no. CS201965099.
In its media advisory, SEC said the company’s products are not registered with the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) and it has no license to operate (LTO) from FDA-Center for Food Regulation and Research.
Although Jocals688 is a duly SEC-registered entity, SEC said the firm is not allowed to engage in the investment-taking activity by offering an investment of up P100,000 with a minimum investment of P10,000.
“An investor is assured that even without any effort on his/her part, a 30% monthly return is guaranteed,” the agency said.
SEC added that a person could become a Jocals688 member by paying P3,980 that would entitle him or her a monthly return of 30 percent.
The membership fee, SEC said, is inclusive of a bottle of juice, a box of coffee and a bottle of food supplement.
Jocals688 offers five different schemes in earning money, which includes direct selling, direct referral bonus, pairing bonus, unilevel bonus, and through buy and earn.
“With the referral link of Jocals6888, one can recruit a member and earn [P500] for every successful registered account,” SEC said.
In a separate radio interview Saturday, lawyer Renato Egypto, SEC-Cagayan de Oro director, said there is no legal impediment if the company is into the business of selling products so long as these have legal permits.
In response, Calderon said that he has secured an LTO from FDA although, he added, that the certificate of product registration of his products is still “on process.”
He also clarified that his company is not engaged in get-rich-quick financial investment scheme used by some groups to entice potential investors.
Calderon said he merely followed the strategies of other networking entities that gave out incentives to members when they purchase products.
He said there is no law that prohibits one to engage in business and lets you earn in the process, and having a strategy to ensure that one’s products are sold is not forbidden by law.
“We are not into investment. What you earn is incentive when you buy products from us,” he said.
Calderon said he suspected that those who complained against Jocals688 at SEC are his competitors in the local networking industry.
Calderon added that he is willing to go to the SEC national office in Metro Manila, as soon as the travel restriction is lifted, to explain his side and clear his name.
SEC has reminded that “aside from the strict penalties imposed by the commission for violations of the Securities Regulation Code, the Revised Corporation Code, and such other rules and regulation it enforces, the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (Republic Act No. 11469) also punishes those participating in cyber incidents that make use or take advantage of the current crisis situation to prey on the public through scams, phishing, fraudulent emails, or other similar acts.”
“Those who act as salesmen, brokers, dealers or agents of the said entity in selling or convincing people to invest in the investment scheme it is being offered including soliciting investments or recruiting investors through the internet may be held criminally liable under Section 28 of the SRC and penalized with a maximum fine of Five Million Pesos (Php5,000,000.00) or imprisonment of Twenty One (21) years or both pursuant to Section 73 of the SRC (SEC vs. Oudine Santos, G.R. No. 195542, 19 March 2014),” it said.(davaotoday.com)