Carlos Hill, Cash Plus and & US$7 billion
So we see the footage on television of Carlos Hill being lead into court with handcuffs. He and his brother were both denied bail. The prosecution argued that Mr. Hill might interfere with investigations that the police are trying to “tie up some loose ends”. They also said Carlos Hill might be in danger because of angry Cash Plus investors and he and brother Bertram Hill who is a US resident might be flight risks.
So back to the Remand Center they go. Carlos hill is no stranger to a jail cell having spent 10 years in prison in the States for mail fraud. His chief accountant Peter Wilson was given bail for $5 million. This because the prosecution didn’t oppose bail for him. Strange that he was given bail and the others weren’t. Would he not be subject to all the same concerns expressed about the both Hill brothers? Maybe he has secretly cut a deal with prosecutors to help them navigate through vast complex maize of money that Hill have architect.
There one thing that sticks in my mind very strongly. I heard the interview first on FAME FM 6:30 news on my way from work this evening. But it stood out even more watching the interview on television where this woman talks to the reporter out side the court where there were protesters in support of Carlos Hill. So what did she say?
Well, she said she invested US$300,000 in Cash Plus last year. The Jamaican equivalent is $21 million Jamaican dollars. She said she took out a line of credit on her house in New York to come up with this money. She has to be paying the interests on this loan. Up to now has not gained a cent from the Cash Plus investment according to her.
When the reporter asked her if she had done “due diligence” about Cash Plus before investing she responded by saying that she “heard that cash plus was doing forex trading”. This she said is something she has experimented with before and knew that if you were a pro then you can do exceptionally well.
I could see the pain in her eyes and hear it in her voice. I am sure there are many other like her and even though many of us might judge her as being anywhere from stupid to greedy. The stakes are high for many with life changing impact in personal lives. All will have to take responsibility for their own actions. Many folks who have money in Cash Plus believe that if and when Carlos Hill is given bail he will start repayment. The hope they have is lifted especially today when Hill himself and his lawyers say they will repay investors.
I decided pluck a few important numbers widely reported in the media about Cash Plus and lay them out for clarity.
Starting with the money. Some of the numbers are estimates based on documents and hard disks drive the police confiscated at Hill’s Norbook home in their raid earlier this week.
1. In a press conference this week police state that they believe Cash Plus and Hill is linked to up to US$7 Billion.
2. Cash Plus has about 40,000 members
3. Cash Plus owes approximately $4 billion (Jamaican) to these members
4. Cash Plus got a loan for over US$1 billion in January 2007
5. Has up to US$2.5 billion in accounts in Germany
6. Under the name Galina Trust Limited (linked to Cash Plus) is alleged to have up US$4 billion.
7. Cash Plus may have accounts and or businesses in at lest 10 different countries. China, UK, Spain, Germany, British Virgin Islands , Kuwait ,also Turks and Caicos Islands
8. The Cash Plus group is made up of up to 186 companies locally and overseas which are either directly or indirectly affiliated with Cash Plus.
9. Carlos Hill served 10 years in federal prison on charges of defrauding investors
10. Carlos Hill in now 60 years old
11. US$8 million was defrauded from investors in the states which resulted in the 10 year prison time.
12. Investors were only 500 in the states compared to Jamaica’s now 40,000 members
13. Cash Plus Chief financial controller, Peter Wilson given a $5 million bail
Now regardless of what you think of Carlos Hill you can’t help but giving him credit for being a masterful manipulator of “the system”. After just spending 10 years in prison and returning to Jamaica in just about 5 years build a vast complex empire on borderline fraud. What kind of connections can an ex-con have to convince anyone to loan him so much money.
I need two Excedrin because it hurts just trying to fathom such complexities. Was the 10 years spent in prison used to cook up this elaborate scheme. With his inside knowledge of the financial world it’s a shame Mr. Hill keeps getting into trouble for doing illegal things. It makes me wonder if it’s by design. He is a fairly old guy with great business skills. He could easily made a lot of money charting the straight and narrow road.
With all those billions in US dollars , investor should be able to get back their money. I know it’s not all that simple. I think if Mr. Hill was not tied up in a legal battle the money could be paid back quicker and easier. This is not to say that charges should not be laid against him for what has emerged as clearly a pyramid scheme.