Attorneys: Usain Bolt Lost $12M In Alleged Scam

    Attorneys: Usain Bolt Lost $12M In Alleged Scam
    Last updated Jan 20, 2023
    Image credit: Reuters [via Business Insider]


    • On Wednesday, lawyers for world-record sprinter Usain Bolt revealed that more than $12.7M is missing from his account with Jamaican private investment firm Stocks & Securities Limited (SSL), threatening civil and criminal action if the money isn't returned within 10 days.[1]
    • They told Associated Press that Bolt's account — which once held $12.8M — now reflects a balance of just $12K, adding that "a serious act of fraud, larceny or a combination of both have been committed against" him if this is correct.[2]
    • This comes as Jamaica's Financial Services Commission (FSC) announced on Tuesday it was assuming temporary management of SSL, a day after launching an investigation into the investment firm.[3]
    • The Chief Technical Director of Jamaica's Financial Investigation Division told CNN that law enforcement first received complaints about alleged fraud at SSL on Jan. 11, affecting accounts belonging to Bolt and others.[4]
    • SSL has said it discovered the fraud earlier this month and acknowledged that several clients may be missing millions of dollars, urging all urgent questions to be directed to the FSC and vowing to alert clients of the resolution as soon as possible.[5]
    • In a media release late on Thursday based on preliminary updates, Finance Minister Nigel Clarke stated that a number of elderly investors are among the 40 people allegedly defrauded.[6]


    Narrative A

    This case has already damaged SSL's reputation and it risks affecting Jamaica's entire financial system as it faces a growing trend of young professionals defrauding their employers. If even a national hero like Bolt cannot trust the country's institutions, regular depositors are likely to become anxious and cause a bank run.

    Narrative B

    Yes, there are questions still to be answered but the public must be sure that Jamaica's government will be fully transparent and leave no stone unturned in this fraud probe. The FSC and its decisions will be included in the investigation, as the Commission raised issues about SSL's culture of non-compliance and mismanagement of clients' funds in 2017 but took little action.

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