DOJ expected to conclude Kapa preliminary probe next week

Published October 28, 2019, 4:22 PM

by Martin Sadongdong & Antonio Colina

By Jeffrey Damicog 

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is expected to conclude next week the preliminary investigation over the criminal complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) against Kapa-Community Ministry which is accused of engaging in an investment scam.

Department of Justice (MANILA BULLETIN)
Department of Justice (MANILA BULLETIN)

Assistant State Prosecutor Maria Lourdes Uy already allowed the respondents to file rejoinders this November 7 as part of their defense against the allegations made by the NBI.

“If there are no requests for more pleadings, the case will be submitted for resolution,” the prosecutor assured.

In its complaint, the NBI accused Kapa of having committed five counts of violations of Sections 8 and 26 in relation to 73 of the Securities and Regulations Code (SRC), and eight counts of syndicated estafa as defined and penalized in Presidential Decree 1689.

The NBI named as respondents in the complaint Kapa founder and president Joel Apolinario; his wife Reyna who is Kapa’s corporate secretary; treasurer Modie Dagala; directors Benigno Tipan Jr., Marnilyn Maturan, Riicky Taer, and Margie Danao; and incorporators Nonita Urbano, Junnie Apolinario, Nelio Nino, Maria Pella Sevilla, Jouelyn Del Castillo, Cristobal Barabad, and Joji Jusay.

The NBI pointed out the Certificate of Incorporation issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) showed that Kapa is a registered independent religious corporation “but does not authorize it to undertake business activities requiring a Secondary License from this Commission…”

“The modus/scheme of KAPA is basically solicitation of money/investment from the public in the guise of ‘donation’ with a promise of perpetual monthly interest equivalent to 30% return/interest in the guise of ‘blessings’,” read the complaint.

Meanwhile, another DOJ panel of prosecutors has approved the filing of charges against the Apolinarios and five others based on the complaint filed by the SEC which accused them of violating the Securities and Regulations Code (SRC).

“The Panel ruled the scheme employed by KAPA and the respondent-officers to be a classic Ponzi scheme considering the impossibly high yields of return promised to investors,” explained Perete.

“It likewise rejected respondents’ argument that such investments were in the nature of religious donations, pointing out that the promise of return negates the giver’s liberality that is the hallmark of every donation,” he added.