MFT appeal denied; accounts to stay frozen | Inquirer Business

MFT appeal denied; accounts to stay frozen

The bank, investment and insurance accounts of the Maria Francesca Tan (MFT) Group of Companies Inc. will remain frozen until November this year, after the Court of Appeals (CA) denied the firm’s motion to lift the freeze order.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), citing the CA resolution, on Tuesday said the extension would “protect the public from the group’s unlawful acts.”

Initially, the appellate court ordered the freezing of MFT Group’s accounts for only 20 days, saying there was probable cause that these “may be related to violations” of the Securities Regulation Code (SRC).


The CA order covers 138 bank accounts, four securities accounts and four insurance accounts linked to the MFT Group, Foundry Ventures I Inc., Mondial Medical Technologies, and several company officials.


“Based on the surrounding facts and circumstances, we cannot rule out the possibility that the subject bank, securities and insurance accounts and the related and materially linked accounts may have been used for the Ponzi scheme,” the CA said, referring to allegations that MFT Group was involved in illegal investment schemes.

The appellate court explained that under the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2001, it may issue freeze orders to prevent the “dissipation, removal or disposal of properties” that were suspected to be used in unlawful activities.

MFT Group, the company founded by millennial Mica Tan, has been embroiled in controversies since last year after the SEC received complaints that the firm had been falling behind on their repayments to certain investors.

The company has repeatedly denied these allegations, insisting that these were part of an online smear campaign against the MFT Group spearheaded by former allies.

In April, the SEC filed a criminal complaint against at least 30 officials of MFT Group and Foundry Ventures before the Department of Justice.

MFT Group has since been calling out the SEC for not granting requests for clarificatory meetings and hearings before taking the case to court.


For its part, the SEC argued that MFT Group was “given the opportunity” to present its arguments when officials filed a motion to lift the cease and desist order issued against the company.

The Inquirer has reached out to MFT Group for comment but it has yet to respond at press time.

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Notable brands under the MFT Group include Mimi & Bros Restaurant and Saladstop!

TAGS: Insurance

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