Rabat - As many as 6,000 Moroccans have been scammed by a fictitious company in Casablanca, which promised them quick profits, trips, and luxuries using the “pyramid scheme” business model.
Rabat – As many as 6,000 Moroccans have been scammed by a fictitious company in Casablanca, which promised them quick profits, trips, and luxuries using the “pyramid scheme” business model.
“Express TV”, a fake company in the Maarif District of Casablanca run by a Sudanese woman and her son, scammed Moroccans by applying the pyramid sales tactic to enroll new members, according to the Moroccan daily Assabah in its Monday issue.
Express TV reportedly defrauded 6,000 Moroccans by promising them a share of the money taken from every additional member enrolled by them into the scheme, a process sometimes known as “multilevel marketing.”
The fictitious company allegedly lured their victims by telling them they would earn luxurious trips to 152 countries and 12,000 cities worldwide, and receive 40 percent discounts for car rentals and hotel stays.
The victims recounted their unfortunate experience to the authorities. According to their stories, one victim was enticed to recruit eight customers in one week and ended up paying MAD 1.32 million to the company for their enrollment.
The more customers someone enrolled, the more money and services were promised to the members, which in turn persuaded them to recruit more people every time.
“During the last month of Ramadan, the victims, who had not yet taken advantage of any of the trips initially promised, began to question the honesty of the system that they had defended by selling it to their relatives and friends,” the daily said.
According to the same source, after months of no delivery on the alleged promises, several victims doubted the authenticity of the company. They checked its financial standing and discovered that it was operating without authorization from the proper authorities. One of the victims felt responsible for involving his family in the pyramid scheme and gave them back the MAD 40,000 they paid when he convinced them to enroll in Express TV.
On Friday a number of victims ran into the son of the Sudanese woman and took him to the police station. On Saturday, the Anfa judicial police took official statements from the victims. The arrested son will be tried in the court of Casablanca; his mother is believed to have left the country. The scammers are set to be tried in a court in Ain Sebaâ, the daily said.