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Two convicted of fraud in brokerage firm scam case

By Rana Husseini - Nov 21,2012 - Last updated at Nov 21,2012

AMMAN — The State Security Court (SSC) on Wednesday sentenced two men to lengthy prison terms after convicting them of fraud in connection with the 2008 brokerage firm scams case.

One defendant was sentenced to 27-and-a-half-years in prison and ordered to pay over JD5 million to his victims, according to one of the defence lawyers involved in the case.

The second defendant was sentenced to 19 years in prison and was ordered to pay his victims JD1,195,848, the lawyer, Ayiat Allah Frihat, told The Jordan Times.

The court also ruled that the defendants “cannot establish any company in the future”, according to Frihat.

The prosecution said the  defendants claimed to be experts in the stock market and told potential clients they could ensure profits of 20 to 25 per cent if they invested money with their firms.

The defendants claimed that the margin of loss in these operations was only 5 per cent, according to the charge sheet.

The verdicts will automatically be reviewed by the Cassation Court within the next 30 days.

On Sunday, the SSC sentenced five men to prison terms ranging between three and 12 years after convicting them of fraud in connection with the same case.

Three men were handed 12-year prison terms, while a fourth got five years and the fifth defendant was sentenced to three years imprisonment.

The SSC ordered the five men to pay back JD5,321,000 to their victims as well as JD3,100 in fines. Eight other defendants, also standing trial in the same case, were acquitted by the SSC for lack of evidence.

In addition, the SSC ordered the closure of four companies in Amman and Irbid owned by the five defendants.

In August 2008, dozens of citizens invested large amounts of cash with the four companies, whose owners later claimed that they lost their money in foreign stock markets, the charge sheet said.

In 2008, several local brokerage firms collapsed leading to significant losses for thousands of citizens who invested their savings in the hope of quick financial returns.

A total of 256 brokerage houses were referred to the State Security Court between September 7, 2008 and January 1, 2009, after more than 400,000 complaints were filed against them by 117,000 citizens from all walks of life, who were affected by the scams. 

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