Authorities have detained Su Yi (蘇怡), the president of jewelry firm Color Stone (彩石珠寶), and another company executive on suspicion of fraud.
Su and a general manager surnamed Lee (李) were detained and their communications restricted on Wednesday last week, after New Taipei City prosecutors and police on May 6 searched the Color Stone offices and six other locations, prosecutors said.
Su and her executives operated investment programs focused on diamonds and gemstones, promising investors guaranteed returns of 15 percent each year and a bonus for each quarter, they said.
From 2016, more than 100 people invested about NT$200 million (US$6.68 million at the current exchange rate) in the scheme, prosecutors said.
Su and Color Stone had previously featured in the media for sponsoring entertainment and film industry events featuring the firm’s jewelry.
A woman surnamed Liao (廖) said that she believed in the investment program because Su is a high-profile woman in the jewelry business.
Overall, she invested NT$1.6 million in the scheme, Liao said.
Liao told investigators that she had received the quarterly bonus for the first year, but then the bonus was delayed last year.
Su promised to pay the investors in installments, but did not, so Liao and other investors filed complaints with the police, she said.
Su also allegedly launched the “Color Stone Royal Club,” which people had to pay NT$9 million to join, prosecutors said, adding that Su promised members that they could share jewelry from her company for special events.
New Taipei prosecutors said that Su and Lee face charges of fraud and breaching the Banking Act (銀行法).
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