Monday, June 18, 2012

Walton International Land Banking SCAM?

Walton International Group clarifies Bank Negara probe
Monday, 09 March 2009 19:53
KUALA LUMPUR: Walton International Property Group (M) Sdn Bhd said on March 9 that it does not distribute real estate investment trusts (REITS), nor does it offer deposit-taking or interest schemes.
It said that it offered clients the opportunity to purchase ownership of high-quality land in highly-researched and carefully-selected growth areas within Canada and the US.
“Walton’s Malaysian clients hold legal title to the North American lands that they own, safely and securely registered in the respective jurisdictions. Over Walton’s 30-year history, almost 50,000 clients worldwide have purchased more than 49,000 acres of land, a total of nearly RM 6 billion worth of land,” it said.
The statement was issued after Bank Negara raided the group’s offices in Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching on March 5 under the Exchange Control Act (ECA) 1953.
The central bank had stated the raids were carried out simultaneously following complaints received from members of the public.
Bank Negara had also seized relevant documents from the company for investigation. The central bank had on March 6 also advised the public to be cautious of this type of land banking schemes promoted by the company.
“Any elements of deposit-taking activities and public offerings such as ‘interest schemes’ or investment in real estates schemes (REITs) should be referred to the appropriate authorities such as Bank Negara Malaysia, Suruhanjaya Syarikat Malaysia and Suruhanjaya Sekuriti,” it added.
Walton said it did not consciously or deliberately contravened any laws in the countries in which it operateds. It also assured its clients, employees, partners and the Malaysian public that it was cooperating fully with Bank Negara to resolve this matter as quickly as possible.
“Walton operates to the highest ethical and business standards, here in Malaysia and around the world,” said Walton Asia chief operating officer Kent Britton.
“In Malaysia, as elsewhere, we are committed to positive relationships with our valued clients and with the citizens and governments of the countries in which we do business.”
He said Walton was fully open and transparent in its professional relationships with regulatory authorities, and responsive to requests for information and cooperation.

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