Italian investors in Traffic Monsoon were duped by the tried-and-true MLM Ponzi scheme of “pay your upline instead of the firm.”
The upline was Fabiano Santos, also known as Maurizio Longo, who instructed his victims to make investments totaling more than $1 million through his front firm Advertising Corp.
Santos doubled down on his deception by submitting investor claims to the Receivership on his downline’s behalf.
The victims of Santos also submitted claims, giving the Receiver a problem.
Paying your upline to join an MLM Ponzi scheme has the drawback that the firm has no record of the money invested.
According to the Receivership Estate’s books and records, Santos sent Traffic Monsoon cash payments totaling more than $1.1 million.
Santos lodged several Disputed Investor Claims in Proofs of Claim against the Receivership Estate.
Additionally, based on the money they paid to Santos, the Italian Investors each duly filed Proofs of Claim against the Receivership Estate. The claims made in the Italian Investor Claims amount to $1,120,862.81.
As a result, whenever a Receivership takes over a Ponzi scheme and pulls together the documents, they are unable to validate the claims of otherwise genuine victims.
The Italian Investor Claims are Disputed Investor Claims since there are no documents demonstrating that the Italian Investors sent any money to Traffic Monsoon.
Early in 2021, the Santos disagreement initially came up. Since then, the Receiver and her staff have been attempting to organize the chaos.
Finally, Santos’ assertions were “disallowed in their totality.” The Receiver then made a decision.
The Italian Investor Claims should be permitted even if there is no proof that they contributed money to Traffic Monsoon; they have sufficiently shown that they are the legitimate victims of the Traffic Monsoon Ponzi scam.
That takes us to the agreement made between the Receiver and the Italian investors.
According to the proposed settlement’s terms:
The remaining claims will be converted to USD and paid out as an accepted claim, and the settlement will conclude any pending claim disputes between the investors and the Receiver. Three duplicate/amended Italian investor claims will be dropped.
Although I don’t have a precise figure, the payout seems to include 27 victims of the Italian Traffic Monsoon based on the claims that have been made.
The contested claims were submitted as part of the Traffic Monsoon Receivership claims procedure between March and April 2020. The claims add up to $1.12 million in total.
On September 12th, the Receiver filed the proposed agreement with Italian investors. Court permission is still awaiting as of the time of publishing.
The Receiver claims that Fabiano Santos “is presently the subject of a criminal investigation for fraud in Italy.” Since it was initially shown in 2021, there have been no updates.