A real estate company called Gerçek Evim (“My Real Home” in English), which the Turkish Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) determined to be liquidated, was deemed part of the Ponzi scheme, which raised 600 million TL ( $ 69.2 million) the media showed Sunday.
The company, which operates under SAS Holding, reportedly pledged a 10% dividend to its 13,000 customers, raising nearly $ 70 million, but the arrangement turned out to be a complete scam, according to the Hürriyet newspaper.
According to the article, the Ponzi scheme initially offered its clients a 10% dividend, who trusted the company after seeing a return on their investment and decided to invest more money.
People familiar with the inner workings of the company told Hürriyet that many people have invested large sums of money in the scheme in the hope of a financial breakthrough.
The newspaper reported that, as with many other Ponzi schemes, the upper echelons became millionaires, able to afford luxury cars such as Ferrari.
“Four years ago, Mahmut B. wrote to a WhatsApp group that he had just bought a Ferrari California, which is selling for more than 2 million Turkish lira ($ 173,000),” it said.
The company recently came under the spotlight due to a terrifying message. One of the directors of SAS Holding, which owns Gerchek Evim, died in his car last month. SAS Holding CEO Sibel Kochan was killed by robbers who tried to steal 10 million Turkish lira hidden in her car, leaving with a third of that amount after she was killed in a clash.
It was also clear that the robbers were among the people who invested in the company, and that they followed Kochan’s every move. Eight people were arrested after the murder.
Hearing about the murder of Kochan, her ex-husband Suleiman Aydin committed suicide by jumping from the high-rise building in which he lived in the Asian district of Istanbul, Ataşehir.
Recently, security forces seized the founders of yet another scam, the liftlik (Farmer’s Bank) fraud. The “mastermind” of the scam, Mehmet Aydin, was arrested and sent to prison last week.… The offender who was wanted by the red notice of Interpol, was extradited from Brazil to Turkey Saturday has been imprisoned ever since.
Ponzi’s infamous “iftlik Bank” or “Farm Bank” scheme promised users of a virtual farming simulator that it would turn virtual animals and crops into real ones if they invested. Aydin, who developed the venture in 2016, fulfilled his promise and opened farms in the real world and started returning money as the Farm Bank user base grew.
But, as with all Ponzi schemes, after a while payments were suspended and complaints began to pile up. When a criminal case was opened in 2018 and the company’s assets were seized, he disappeared and reappeared in many countries in South America. Finally, after years on the run, he released a video early last week and announced that he would surrender. After the completion of the extradition procedure, he was taken to Istanbul and taken into custody.
Fatih Aydin, the older brother of Mehmet Aydin, was also recently detained by the Uruguayan police. and is expected to be extradited to Turkey shortly. Aydin faces charges similar to his brother, ranging from fraud to money laundering.