A man has been arrested on suspicion of illegal money lending and money laundering, following an operation in Gloucester.
Cash, documentation and electronic devices were seized following a raid on a property in Tuffley on Tuesday, 29 October.
A 66-year-old man was taken into custody as part of the operation by the England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) in partnership with Gloucestershire County Council Trading Standards and Gloucestershire Constabulary, and has been released under investigation pending further enquiries.
Tony Quigley, Head of the Illegal Money Lending Team, said: “Loan sharks are ruthless criminals who exploit some of the most vulnerable of our society.
“At this time of the year especially, residents may be tempted to turn to loan sharks but our message is clear – what may seem like a small loan to pay for gifts or just to tide you over, could end up costing you for years to come.
“I would encourage anyone who is aware of similar activities in their area to report it to prevent more people becoming victims of these unscrupulous lenders.”
Nationally, Illegal Money Lending Teams have secured more than 394 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 480 years’ worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £74.9 million worth of illegal debt and helped over 29,000 people.
To report a loan shark, call the 24/7 confidential hotline on 0300 555 2222, text a report to 078600 22116 or visit the website www.stoploansharks.co.uk.