News

Public Statement No. 2 of 2010 (10 December 2010)

Tortola, British Virgin Islands – 10 December, 2010 – The British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission (the "FSC") considers it necessary to issue this Public Statement in order to protect the property of, or in the custody, possession or control of British Atlantic Insurance Company Limited (the "Company"), or to protect customers or creditors, or potential customers or creditors of the Company. The FSC wishes it to be known that:

1. The Company is registered and licensed as an insurance provider of long term life and disability insurance, having been so registed and licensed originally as USPEN Insurance Company Limited on 7 June, 2001. The Company was granted an approved name change to British Atlantic Insurance Company Limited on 12 June, 2008.

2. Iliana Maceiras, Leonardo Maceiras Jr., and Nildo Verdeja ("the directors") are the sole directors and shareholders of the Company. The directors are also officers of U.S. Pension Trust Corp and U.S. College Trust Corp., (collectively "USPT") both of which were incorporated in Florida, USA with their principal place of business in Coral Gables;

3. According to a Press Release issued by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission on 1 October, 2010, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida found USPT and the directors liable for violating the anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws stemming from a 13-year fraud in which they siphoned up to 85 percent of investors' initial contributions for undisclosed commissions and other fees. USPT was also found liable for acting as unregistered broker-dealers and the directors liable for aiding and abetting those violations;

4. According to the Court findings, USPT solicited investments mostly from foreign investors in various multi-year investment plans starting in 1995. The plans put funds into a combination of U.S. mutual funds and insurance products. The Court findings state that since 2001 the licensee provided the insurance offered through USPT's plans. The Court found that both in written material submitted to investors and in conversations with investors, USPT, at the direction of the directors, intentionally omitted disclosing numerous commissions and fees, including up to 85 percent of first-year contributions in some plans;

5. The Court ordered USPT to disgorge $62.6 million in investor contributions they fraudulently raised between 1995 and 2008 and to pay a $50 million civil penalty. The Court also ordered the directors to pay disgorgement of between $674,567 and $1,093,364 representing their salaries during that time and a $200,000 civil penalty.

6. The FSC is of the opinion that the directors do not satisfy its fit and proper criteria.

7. Having regard to the serious nature of the allegations and the Court findings the FSC is of the opinion that the Company may be carrying on business in a manner that is detrimental to the interests of its clients, creditors and investors. The FSC is also of the opinion that the directors and shareholders of the Company are no longer fit and proper persons to have an interest in, or to be concerned with the management of the Company. Accordingly, on 1 December 2010, the FSC issued a directive to the Company under section 40(1) of the Financial Services Commission Act, 2001, requiring the Company, among other things, to take the following action:

(a) To cease and desist forthwith from:

(i) engaging in any class or type of insurance business;

(ii) entering into any new contracts for any class or type of insurance business;

(iii) paying any claims under any insurance contracts; and

(iv) transferring, disposing of, dealing with or otherwise diminishing property and/or assets of the licensee or in its possession, custody or control, until further notice by the Commission.

8. The FSC has also withdrawn its approval for the appointment of the Company's directors and has required the directors to cease to perform any function in relation to the Company.

9. The FSC's investigations into the Company are continuing and it will provide an update on developments as matters progress.

The FSC issues this public statement pursuant to Section 37A (4) of the Financial Services Commission Act, 2001.

Signed:

Robert A. Mathavious
Managing Director /CEO
British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission
Pasea Estate, Tortola, British Virgin Islands
Telephone: (284) 494-4190
Facsimile: (284) 494-5016
E-mail: commissioner@bvifsc.vg
Website: www.bvifsc.vg
Hours: Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

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Contact Information

British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission


Pasea Estate
P.O. Box 418
Road Town, Tortola, VG 1110
British Virgin Islands

Tel: 284-494-1324 or 284-494-4190 GMT – 4:00
Fax: 284-494-5016
Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30a.m. - 4:30p.m.
commissioner@bvifsc.vg