Organico branch manager, teller from Bohol nabbed while hiding in Argao town, Cebu

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A BRANCH manager and a teller of a company allegedly engaged in a controversial pyramiding scam in Bohol was arrested in Barangay Capio-an, Argao town in southern Cebu past 2 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 1, 2022.

Renato Autida, 38, and Vincent Bunado, 30, were arrested by personnel of the Argao Police Station based on arrest warrants issued against them by Regional Trial Court Judge Glenn Pergamino of Talibon, Bohol.

Autida and Bunado were accused of syndicated estafa after they were implicated in a controversial investment scheme initiated by Organico Agribusiness Venture Corp. (Organico) in 2019.

In 2018, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued an advisory warning the public concerning Organico’s practice of promising investors of profits if they avail themselves of their investment schemes.

According to SEC, one of Organico’s schemes involved securing money from their investors to fund their diverse businesses which include organic farming, organic poultry, organic piggery, restaurant serving organic food, telemarketing, music studio and construction and eventually, an organic meat shop.

Another investment scheme is the 90-day investment, where for every P3,600 invested, one piglet is raised and sold after three months and the investor gets his money back with profit for a total of P7,000.

The controversial firm also allegedly engaged in crowdfunding activities through the internet where an investor should buy at least 10 shares worth P1,800 each, for a payout of P450 every 15 days or P2,700 in three months.

According to Argao police, Autida was identified as the manager of Organico’s Talibon branch while Bunado was working as one of his tellers.

Hiding in plain sight

Cpl. John Mark Canonego of the Argao Police Station told SunStar Cebu they conducted the operation after receiving information that the two were hiding in Argao after fleeing Bohol.

Canonego said the suspects had reportedly bought a lot in Argao where they built a house and tend a farm before being arrested.

The two, however, denied the accusations against them.

The suspects were detained by the Argao Police Station and they were set to return to Talibon to face the criminal charges against them.

No bail has been recommended for the temporary liberty of the accused. (GPL, TPT)