Finance Ministry says none of the over 200 accounts affected by alleged fraud at SSL, has recovered any part of what was lost

None of the over 200 accounts affected by the alleged fraud at Stocks and Securities Limited (SSL), has recovered any part of what was lost due to the fraud.

That confirmation came in a consolidated update on SSL from the finance ministry this morning.

The ministry says any recovery in the over 3 billion dollar fraud case could only come by way of identification and pursuit of the proceeds of the fraud in accordance with Jamaica’s Proceeds Of Crime Act, POCA. 

It explains that the Financial Investigations Division (FID), in its role as the asset recovery agency under the POCA, is empowered by law to investigate, identify and recover the proceeds of crime. 

The FID is also the enforcing authority under the act for the purposes of conducting proceedings relating to criminal forfeiture and is also expressly authorized to conduct civil recovery proceedings in the Supreme Court.

The ministry says while the tracing of fraudulently obtained assets can begin before the conclusion of court proceedings in the criminal matter, the “benefit investigation”, which is integral to the forfeiture and recovery process, can only start after criminal convictions are obtained in connection with the fraud.

It notes however, that civil proceedings are open to aggrieved parties and can be started at any time.

Meantime, as it relates to the investigation of the fraud at SSL, the ministry reiterates that international investigations firm, KROLL Associates UK Limited, was engaged to undertake an independent forensic audit to understand the facts relating to the fraud perpetrated at SSL from 2010 to 2023.

It says the KROLL report submitted in November 2023 has confirmed that the suspected fraudulent activity and mismanagement at SSL and its related parties were much broader than initially understood.

The ministry explains that with the benefit of the report, the FID submitted a file to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions for the consideration of criminal charges against individuals linked to the SSL network of companies and/or the companies pursuant to the Proceeds Of Crime Act, Larceny Act and financial sector legislation.

Further commenting on the court matter between the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and SSL, the ministry says the core issue in the case is to determine whether the authority over SSL should rest with the temporary manager appointed by the FSC or the trustee appointed by (the board of) SSL itself.

The ministry notes that after a hearing on December 20, 2023 and pre-trial review on January 18 this year, the trial commenced on February 26, with the next hearing scheduled for April 29, 2024.


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