Filipinos warned vs hack charity group with brand-new name
TABERNACLE HOUSE OF WORSHIP

Filipinos warned vs hack charity group with brand-new name

A group of companies that was previously served a cease and desist order for an investment scheme in the guise of religious donations is continuing operations under a new name, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), as it urged the public to exercise “extreme caution.”

In a July 5 advisory, the corporate watchdog warned that Hasmadai Foundation Inc., Humanitarian and Spiritual Mission Apostulates of Davao and Asia Inc., and Humanitarian Institute of Technology Corp. are now operating under Tabernacle House of Worship.

The SEC cited the YouTube videos of Hasmadai group leader Dante Encarnacion Tabusares where he announced the name change.

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“The public is hereby advised to exercise extreme caution when approached by anyone claiming to represent Tabernacle House of Worship, and not to invest or stop investing in the latter,” the SEC said in its advisory.

This comes nearly two months after the commission issued a cease and desist order against Hasmadai and its 12 officers after they were found to be offering securities in the form of “mission support.”

The provincial government of Agusan del Sur and the SEC Butuan extension office found that Hasmadai had enticed local and foreign donors to donate an amount that would entitle them to a monthly “missionary allowance,” equivalent to 27 to 34 percent of their donation.

A “donation” of P5,000 will supposedly merit an investor a monthly allowance of P1,850, minus a “spiritual medical assistance” fee of P500, therefore leaving them a net of P1,350. Some were encouraged to pledge as much as P20,000.

According to the SEC, Tabusares admitted to accepting donations and being a former member of KAPA-Community Ministry International Inc., another religious corporation whose certificate of registration was revoked over investment fraud.

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The regulator pointed out that Hasmadai was essentially offering for sale unregistered securities in the form of investment contracts, therefore violating the Securities Regulation Code.

Under the law, securities may not be sold or offered without a registration filed with and approved by the SEC.

Hasmadai was likewise unauthorized to conduct national fund campaigns that are typically approved by the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

The Presidential Task Force on Media Security earlier lauded the issuance of the cease and desist order on Hasmadai, whose founder, Tabusares, was tagged as the alleged mastermind in the murder of broadcast journalist Eduardo “Ed” Dizon in 2019.

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Tabusares went into hiding when he was charged for killing the Kidapawan City-based journalist, but he resurfaced and applied for bail earlier this year.

TAGS: illegal investment scheme, SEC

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