JG Mastermind behind overseas job scam returns to court today
Mastermind behind overseas job scam returns to court today
published: Friday December 2, 2005
Glenroy Sinclair and Dionne Rose, Staff Reporters
A 40-YEAR-OLD woman, the mastermind behind a multimillion-dollar overseas employment scam, will return to the Corporate Area Criminal Court today for sentencing, after pleading guilty Tuesday, to three counts of obtaining money by false pretence.
She is Marva Johnson, a resident of Sydenham in St. Catherine, who was charged along with her two male accomplices, Sean Black, an employee of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, and Delroy McLarty.
According to the police, Johnson was picked up last week at the Norman Manley International Airport, where she had gone to pick up a man arriving from the United Kingdom. After she was apprehended, further investigations by the police revealed that the man had arrived in the island on a false British passport. He too was taken into custody.
Allegations are that Johnson had been working in collaboration with McLarty to fleece thousands of dollars from persons whom she had promised overseas employment. She had also collected money from a number of parents, promising to take their children on a trip to Disney World in Florida, United States.
The police believe she fleeced over $10 million. In the case of the overseas employment racket, some persons were asked to pay between $120,000 and $250,000. For the Disney World trip, one individual was asked to pay over $900,000.
MINISTER APPLAUDS ARREST
Contacted yesterday Horace Dalley, Minister of Labour and Social Security, said he was happy that the police had arrested and charged the employee.
"I am very happy that this member of staff has been brought to book and any member of staff who does this must know that this will happen to them too," he said.
He added that it was not the first time such an incident had occurred, but that similar cases had decreased over the years.
"It is zero tolerance with me. We have put in place checks and balances, the report mechanism is much more stringent," Dalley said.
The police are asking that anyone who may have been fleeced by Ms. Johnson to contact Deputy Superintendent Fitz Bailey at the Fraud Squad.