GEORGE TOWN: A day after his release from police custody, Johnson Lee (pic) appears to have done a Houdini.
There is a question mark on the whereabouts of the JJPTR money game founder following his “freedom” on Tuesday.
A check at two houses in Bayan Baru and Jelutong found that he had not been staying there for years.
One of his former neighbours said Lee used to live there with his parents and sister in Bayan Baru.
“But they moved out four years ago. The house was sold to a teacher.”
The neighbour, who declined to be named, said she was still in touch with Lee’s mother who is residing in the United States with his sister.
“According to his mother, Lee used to stay in the US but came back a few years ago,” she said.
Another former neighbour in Jelutong said Lee and his father had moved out two years ago.
“The house is now occupied by several foreign workers,” the neighbour said.
Penang police chief Comm Datuk Chuah Ghee Lye said investigations were ongoing despite the release of Lee and his two aides on police bail.
As for the MBI scheme, Comm Chuah said police were keeping a close watch although no reports have been lodged against the operator.
They are taking a wait-and-see approach after Bank Negara added MBI International and Mface International to its financial consumer alert list.
He believed investors of such schemes would not come forward as long as they received their promised dividends.
“Many of them know that once the police step in to investigate, there is a possibility they will not get back what they had invested,” he told reporters yesterday.
An MBI investor yesterday indicated that he still had faith in the scheme, saying that it would not collapse easily as “the company has strong foundation and sound investment mechanism”.
“The investment is similar to the share market, where we use the ‘split’ method,” he said, adding that the scheme would not collapse unless all the investors sell off their units or withdraw from the scheme simultaneously.
“But this is unlikely to happen.
“Based on our system, a potential seller has to pair with a potential buyer before a transaction can be done.
“And the pairing process would take up to six months,” he said when contacted.
On Monday, both MBI International Sdn Bhd and Mface International Sdn Bhd were named with 300 other companies on suspicion of not adhering to Bank Negara’s laws.
Meanwhile, a Chinese daily reported of a 54-year-old man who hanged himself on a tree in Taiping, Perak, yesterday with newspaper clippings about JJPTR found on him.
Police have ruled out foul play. It is believed to be a money game-related case.
The victim’s elder brother, identified only as Yeoh, said that his sibling was reserved days before his death.
“I found out he had been keeping newspaper reports of JJPTR. I asked if he had invested in it but he denied doing so,” he said.