World-record sprinter Usain Bolt has had more than $12.7 million wiped from his account with a private investment firm in Jamaica, and his lawyers are demanding it be returned.
Attorney Linton P. Gordon said Bolt's account with Stocks & Securities Limited, which is based in Kingston, only has a balance of $12,000 after originally holding $12.8 million.
In a letter obtained by the Associated Press, lawyers for the sprinter demanded the money be returned, threatening civil and criminal action if it isn't returned within the next 10 days.
"If this is correct, and we are hoping it is not, then a serious act of fraud larceny or a combination of both have been committed against our client,'' attorneys said in the letter sent to Stocks & Securities Limited on Monday (January 16)
Jamaica's Financial Services Commission launched an investigation into the private investment firm, appointing a special auditor to look into the fraud allegations on Monday. The company said it discovered the fraud earlier this month, and several individuals may be missing millions of dollars.
"We understand that clients are anxious to receive more information and assure you that we are closely monitoring the matter throughout all the required steps and will alert our clients of the resolution as soon as that information is available,'' the company said on its website.
Jamaica's finance minister, Nigel Clarke, said the situation was alarming. Financial authorities said on Tuesday that they were temporarily taking over management of Stocks & Securities Limited. The private investment firm can continue operations but has to seek approval from the government for any transactions.