NBI agents posed as KAPA believers to bring down Joel Apolinario’s scam: It’s a criminal enterprise!
The National Bureau of Investigation revealed that its agents posed as members of KAPA-Community Ministry International Inc. to bring down the Surigao del Sur-based investment scam of Pastor Joel Apolinario.
Deputy Director Antonio Pagatpat told reporters that its agents joined the long lines of people who signed up for KAPA membership as early as March this year to get an inside look on the belly of the beast before conducting a raid on its offices.
Pagatpat said the NBI planned to conduct a raid on Apolnario’s house and offices on June 20. But he said the NBI had to accelerate it plan to June 10 after the President ordered the closure of KAPA last June 8.
“We believe the President was right. If we will wait for the June 20 schedule operation, most of the evidence would be carried away. They are already talking about this on Facebook,” said Pagatpat.
He said 14 NBI teams were sent simultaneously to serve 14 search warrants issued by the Regional Trial Court of Manila against KAPA (13) and another investment scam, ALAMCCO (1).
The areas covered by 11 search warrants were Cagayan Valley, Quezon City, Taytay, Rizal, Cebu City, Tacloban City, Tagum City, Cagayan de Oro. The other three warrants were served in Gen. Santos City, including the
residence of Apolinario who was not present.
Pagatpat said this was how his men infiltrated KAPA; ranks: “After filling up their forms as a member of a religious group, they would give their money (called ‘donation’) and were scheduled to come back a month after to get their 30 percent earnings (‘love gift’ or ‘blessing’).”
He said the investments could be as low as P5,000 to P1 million-plus.
“At ito ang napansin ng ating ahente, kung sino ang nag-a-assist sa pagpasok ng member may five percent automatic. Kaya pumipila rin ang mga kunwari mag-a-assist. Bago papasok, tatabihan ako ng isa taga roon iga-guide ako. Pagbigay ko ng pera, may five percent kaagad,” he said.
He said the embedded agents could not find any source of investments where Apolinario could get the 30 percent guaranteed return. “It was clear that this was bound to fail because it was clear that money given to first investors were coming from new recruits. The day will come when no more payouts will be given because there will be no more recruits signing up,” said Pagatpat in Filipino.
While Apolinario has cloaked his scam as a religious enterprise to evade the scrutiny of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Pagatpat said his men discovered that it was just a religious front.
“It has many followers but the truth is they’re operating as a criminal enterprise. It’s not a religious organization at all,” said Pagatpat.
“Based on the reports from our agents, wala tayong nakitang religious activity from day one up, not a single religious activity was conducted by the organization. In fact, tinatanggap nila lahat kung anuman at kung saan ka nanggaling na sector ng relihiyon basta may donasyon ka,” he added.