Assets worth more than Rs 757 crore belonging to direct-selling consumer goods company Amway India have been seized under the anti-money laundering law, the enforcement directorate said on Monday.
The preliminary seized properties of Amway India Enterprises Pvt Ltd. include land and factory buildings in Dindigul district of Tamil Nadu, factories and machinery, vehicles, bank accounts and fixed deposits, it said in a statement.
Linking a property means it cannot be transferred, converted or moved.
Amway India has not yet commented on the charges.
Out of the total Rs 757.77 crore in assets seized under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), immovable and movable property is worth Rs 411.83 crore with the rest being bank balances of Rs 345.94 crore in custody on 36 Amway accounts, it said. †
“An investigation into money laundering by the ED revealed that Amway is committing pyramid scheme fraud under the guise of direct sales from a multi-level marketing network,” the agency said.
The Enforcement Directorate accused the company of conducting a multi-level “scam” in which the prices of most of the products offered by the company were “exorbitant compared to the alternative popular products of well-known manufacturers available on the open market” .
“Without knowing the real facts, the ordinary gullible public is led to join the company and buy products at exorbitant prices and thus lose their hard-earned money. The new members do not buy the products to use them, but to get rich by becoming a member as demonstrated by the upline members. The reality is that the commissions the upline members receive contribute enormously to the increase in the prices of the products,” it added.
“The company’s entire focus is on promoting how members can become rich by joining. There is no focus on the products. Products are being used to mask this MLM Pyramid fraud as a direct selling company,” the agency said. .