October 25, 2006 (LBO) – A Ponzi-style fraud that was masquerading as an internet based outsourcing company, shut up shop Wednesday, leaving thousands of Sri Lankan defrauded of millions of rupees. Mt. Lavinia police said the operators, who ran a company called Seagullsoftwares have fled the office and they had no idea how many people had joined the scheme.
I invested 650,000 rupees and I was supposed to get my first payment today, a dazed victim Mohammed Imran said.
I am not in a mood to talk anymore.
The company which claimed to offer internet based data entry work for a monthly payment first asked people who joined the scheme, to make a deposit of 6,500 rupees to purchase what was called a ˜slot’.
After 45 days the firm promised to make a payment of 4,500 rupees every month, provided some data was entered into a website.
The operators claimed it was a BPO operation. The firm had offices in several locations including Mount Lavinia.
Two Indian nationals who were king pins of the scheme are now believed to have fled the country.
A Ponzi is a variation of a pyramid scam where the people who joined first is rewarded with the money taken from th