10 arrested for suspected loan-sharking activities

The police arrested 10 people suspected of being involved in loan-sharking activities.
The police arrested 10 people suspected of being involved in loan-sharking activities.PHOTO: PHOTO ST

SINGAPORE - Ten suspects were nabbed on Tuesday (April 12) for alleged involvement in loan-sharking activities, police said in two separate statements.

In a 12-hour operation on Tuesday, police arrested seven men and one woman at many locations islandwide for their suspected involvement with a loan-sharking syndicate.

Police seized about $29,000 in cash, mobile phones, ATM cards, Internet banking dongles, note books, a bank book and bank transaction slips during the raids.

The suspects, aged between 32 and 61, are believed to be involved in different roles in the syndicate, including collecting repayment and giving new loans to borrowers.

Head of the Unlicensed Moneylending Strikeforce of CID, Superintendent of Police Loh Kah Wai commended the officers involved.

"Police will continue with our relentless enforcement efforts to track down those involved in the loansharking business and bring them to justice," he said in a statement on Wednesday (April 13).

In another series of loan-shark harassment cases, two suspects aged 17 and 18 were arrested.

Police received a report last Sunday that a flat at Block 538, Hougang Street 52, was locked by a bicycle lock and splashed with red paint.

Loan-shark related graffiti was also found on the wall outside the flat. Through ground enquiries and police cameras, the police uncovered the identity of one of the suspects.

The 18-year-old suspect was arrested along West Coast Road on Tuesday. Following the arrest, the 17-year-old was also identified, and nabbed at Dover Road on the same day.

The two are believed to have carried out similar acts of harassment at Hougang, Sembawang and Jurong East housing estates.

First time offenders found guilty of loan-shark harassment can be fined between $5,000 and $50,000 with a mandatory jail sentence of up to five years and caning of up to six strokes.

Police advised members of public to stay away from loan sharks and not to work with or help them in any way.

The public can call the police at 999 or the X-Ah Long hotline at 1800-924-5664 to report illegal loan-sharking activities.