April 2, 2010

Telemarketing Fraud Affects Australian Voluntary Carbon Offset Market

Filed under: climate — inece @ 12:20 pm

Reuters reports that more than 100 people have told the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) they have lost money after being duped by an aggressive telemarketing scheme run by WesternField Holdings Inc., which has defrauded investors of US$3.2 million in a carbon investment scheme.

Reuters notes that:

The case risks denting the reputation of the unregulated voluntary carbon offset market, which has been damaged in the past by allegations of fraud and double-counting, although market players said its small size meant it wouldn’t have a big impact.

The state-backed ACCC has labeled the firm’s carbon investment offerings a scam that preys on investors’ desire to do something good for the environment. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission has blacklisted WesternField, accusing it of investment fraud.

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