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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Two arrested for role in big Ponzi scheme

Two arrested for role in big Ponzi scheme

Officers from the Ministry of Interior’s Central Security Department yesterday arrested two employees of the Empire Big Capital (EBC) company, whose investment scheme allegedly defrauded thousands nationwide.

Sin Vireak, the Phnom Penh deputy prosecutor, said the employees were arrested near the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital and are being questioned at the court.

“We will continue questioning until [Friday],” he said, adding that he did not know their identities. “We are now checking what was the hierarchy of the two people’s roles in this company and what they are doing.”

Vireak was able to confirm that the two arrested were not any of the three alleged masterminds of the scheme – Malaysian national Sean Tan, and Cambodians Chi Gosaly and Huot Sovann – who are all wanted by police but are suspected to have fled the country.

Promising monthly returns of 10 percent on investments, EBC allegedly persuaded people to put their money into the fund, while incentivising them to persuade others to invest. After getting profits on their investments for a few months, victims have told The Post, payments stopped coming through.

Earlier this month, the ministries of interior, justice and finance announced that more than 7,000 plaintiffs have filed complaints against EBC and two partner companies, the Asean Instrument Foundation and Investment Consultant Association. Officials estimated the losses to reach nearly $60 million.

Dy Vichea, the head of the Interior Ministry’s Central Security Department, could not be reached.

Additional reporting by James Reddick

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