DELISTED agribusiness firm Calata Corp. last week filed several complaints against a foreign investor for alleged extortion and cyber libel.
In a statement, Calata Corp. said it was in coordination with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Bureau of Immigration (BI) with regard to the complaint against Austrian national Alfred Reiterer.
Reiterer is a known critic of Calata’s management.
He denied the allegations, saying these are “either false, misleading, or made with malicious intention.”
“It is shocking to hear that in the Philippines, a foreigner can be accused in the media without any proof. I did not have any criminal record then and I do not have any criminal record now,” the Austrian national said.
According to Calata Corp., the NBI “has already commenced verification proceedings and has already established direct communications with Calata Corp. in view of discussing in detail how to proceed. It is expected that in the very near future, Reiterer shall be invited for questioning in at least these two government offices.”
Calata Corp. added it would also file an additional complaint against Reiterer for alleged disruptive actions against the firm and its president, Joseph Calata, and Black Cell Technology Ltd.
“Reiterer has also been maligning Krops, which is a business totally unrelated to Calata Corp. The Krops business has been helping Filipino farmers gain better market access for their products. Our only desire for this company is to grow it and make it a global agricultural market place to help more farmers. To date, we have helped over 6,000 farmers, some of whom have had no market access for their products,” the company said.
Krops is a mobile application developed by Calata Corp. that aims to provide an online marketplace for farm produce. Krops is said to have launched an initial coin offering (ICO) online.
Early last week, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued an advisory warning the public against participating in so-called “initial coin offerings” and purchasing the corresponding “virtual currency.”
“The public is hereby advised to be vigilant when investing in this kind of investing activity and to take the necessary precautions in dealing with ICO entities,” the SEC said.
Last year, Calata Corp. and its president, Joseph Calata, were accused of committing several violations including alleged stock manipulation and tax evasion. Prior its delisting, the PSE gave the company the option to do a voluntary delisting by conducting a tender offer to its shareholders. However, this was rejected by Calata.