Saturday, 1 March 2014

Blumont Group ramps Merlin Diamonds (MED.AX)

Merlin Diamonds (MED.AX) is a failing diamond miner that was the subject of a proposed takeover by the Singaporean circular investment cartel Blumont Group in early 2013. Now MED is again attempting to join this revaluation fraud. On 17 February 2014, MED announced Blumont Group was being issued 26m shares at $0.075, constituting 11% of shares outstanding. On 20 February, MED announced a further 117,333,333 shares were being issued at $0.075 to "international investors", constituting around a third of the company.

On 28 February, MED announced a scrip take-over offer from Blumont Group, offering 5.7 Blumont shares for every 2 MED shares. This implies a "market" value of $0.15 for MED, and its share price was immediately moved 41% to $0.12 by the cartel. Those "international investors" sure had excellent timing, achieving unrealized profits of $5.3 million, a 60% gain in a week. They can then claim these fake "profits" in annual reports, and attract new sucker investors based on the fraudulent performance figures.

It goes without saying that the "international investors" are associates of the Blumont cartel, and that these are all sham transactions between related parties, designed to create fake "profits" and "assets". Merlin Diamonds now functions as a vehicle for international securities fraud.

ASIC refuses to take any action as the number of openly fraudulent ASX-listed companies rises by the day. No reasonable person could honestly claim to believe that these revaluation frauds are legit, the result of non-collusive market behavior. But sanity testing its results is not part of ASIC's procedure. As long as ASIC has followed its procedures, it regards itself as having done a fine job, even if the results are abhorrent.

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