2 Sep 2005

Pacific Islands alleged to attract scams

5:39 pm on 2 September 2005

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission has warned about a growing number of investment scams involving Pacific locations.

The Commission says it shut down 76 illegal investment schemes in the last financial year, with wealth creation seminars and internet scams involving tropical locations featuring prominently.

The Commissioner, Berna Collier, says people are being enticed by attractive seminar packages before scamsters siphen their money away through dud investments.

"And the seminars will be held in places like Vanuatu and Samoa so that it's built into the cost of the seminar itself and what this does is it adds the quality of glamour to the product for an Australian consumer because, clearly, going to places like Vanuatu and Samoa is something which we really enjoy doing and it just feeds into an illusion that the product has some substance."

Berna Collier says such investment scams are becoming more frequent, and due to their illegality in Australia, scamsters are increasingly turning to exotic Pacific islands to carry them out.