(CMR) The Jamaican government has announced that it will seek the help of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation in the investigation of fraud at investment firm Stocks and Securities Limited (SSL).
Jamaica drew international attention after track star Usain Bolt revealed that he lost almost US$12 million in a major fraud at the firm. Over 30 other clients were also impacted, with over $3 billion reportedly fleeced from clients.
On Monday, it was revealed that several government entities have also invested millions in the investment firm.
Finance Minister Dr. Nigel Clarke told reporters on Monday that he would be writing to international partners to request the assistance of international forensic auditors to investigate the fraud. In promising a full investigation into the multi-billion dollar fraud, Dr. Clarke said, “no stone will be left unturned.”
The fraud is said to have gone undetected for 13 years or longer, the finance minister revealed.
“How the alleged SSL fraud went undetected for 13 years, perhaps even longer? I put it to you that, that is the central question, and it is a question that our government will ensure is answered. I ask for us not to be divided at this time by narrow ambitions,” Dr. Clarke said.
So far, no one has been arrested in the investigation, which has seen managers and CEOs distancing themselves from the fraud. A former manager, Jean-Ann Panton, admitted to taking money from SSL, is also being investigated but has not been charged.
Several documents and electronic devices were seized at her apartment last week. Panton submitted a sworn statement admitting how she stole millions of dollars from several clients over 10 years.
She admitted to using various mechanisms to fleece her clients, such as editing a customer’s email in order to provide consent to sell their shares and disburse the payments to the respective bearer.