Appeal for victims to come forward after suspected illegal money lenders arrested in Huddersfield

Officers investigating allegations of illegal money lending and money laundering have appealed for potential victims to come forward.

The appeal comes after the England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT), working in partnership with West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service and West Yorkshire Police, executed warrants at two properties in Huddersfield last month (29 June 2021).

During searches of the properties, officers seized cash and documentation and the suspects were released under investigation.

Officers are keen to speak to anyone who may have had a loan or have information that can assist the investigation.

Anyone who has had a loan has not done anything wrong.

Spotting the signs of illegal money lending

  • Cash loan or bank transfer with no paperwork, such as a credit agreement or record of payments.
  • Lender refuses to give information about the loan, such as the interest rate or how much you owe.
  • Forced to hand over your bank card and personal items as “security” on the loan.
  •  A debt which keeps growing even though you’re making payments.
  •  Borrowed from someone you thought was a friend.
  •  Lender turned nasty and threatened you when you couldn’t pay.

Tony Quigley, Head of the England Illegal Money Lending Team, said: “Our investigation is at an early stage, however we urge anyone who may have information about illegal money lending activity in the area to come forward. Even the smallest information may be crucial to our investigation and we can provide support to people affected. 

“Our advice to residents is please don’t use a loan shark to borrow money, even if you think they’re a friend – they usually start out being friendly, but take a lot of money off vulnerable people.

“We have provided specialist support to over 30,000 people and helped them get their lives back on track. If you have been affected by illegal lending or are concerned that someone you know is being targeted, our helpline is available 24/7 on 0300 555 2222 and you can Live Chat with us at www.stoploansharks.co.uk.”