Man arrested in East London on suspicion of acting as a loan shark

A 25-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of illegal money lending following an operation in East London.

The England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) worked in partnership with officers from Metropolitan Police to execute a warrant at an address in the West Ham area on Tuesday, October 10.

Officers seized electronic devices and documents and tthe suspect was taken into custody and questioned by investigators. He is helping with enquiries.

The IMLT works in partnership with Newham Council Trading Standards Service to investigate and prosecute illegal money lenders.

Head of the Illegal Money Lending Team, Tony Quigley, said: “We work continually with our partners across England to tackle the scourge of illegal money lending.

“If you, or anyone you know, has been targeted by an illegal lender, or has any knowledge of illegal lending activities, you can contact our team in complete confidence. We can offer support and advice about what to do next.”

There are around 1.08 million people in debt to loan sharks in England, according to figures from The Centre for Social Justice.

The signs that you may have been targeted by an illegal lender include: Being given no paperwork regarding a loan; being asked to hand over items like bank cards or a passport until the loan is repaid; interest or charges being continually added; being threatened or intimidated if you can’t pay.

Anyone with concerns about illegal money lending can contact the Stop Loan Sharks 24/7 Helpline in confidence on 0300 555 2222 or access support online at www.stoploansharks.co.uk. Live Chat is available on the website between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.