A 49-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of illegal money lending and money laundering offences following an operation in Salford.
The England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) worked in partnership with Salford City Council Trading Standards and Greater Manchester Police to execute warrants at two addresses in Charlestown and Irlam on Wednesday, January 19.
Officers seized documentation and electronic devices during searches of the properties.
The suspect was interviewed and subsequently released under investigation while enquiries continue.
Tony Quigley, Head of the Illegal Money Lending Team said: “We are determined to warn residents about the dangers of loan sharks, and we will work with partners to take action against them.
“Loan sharks are criminals that prey on the most vulnerable people in our communities. They trap their victims into spiralling debt and will often use intimidation and violence.
“We will not tolerate these activities in Greater Manchester and would urge anyone with information about loan sharks to report them as soon as possible.”
Councillor David Lancaster, lead member for environment, neighbourhoods and community safety at Salford City Council said: “There is support available to prevent people thinking they need to turn to loan sharks and we welcome any information which can help put loan sharks out of action.
“People in debt can contact National Debtline or Stepchange for help or, if they have multiple, complicated debts, Salford City Council’s welfare rights and debt advice team. Salford Credit Union provides affordable credit and financial advice.”
Residents are urged to look out for the warning signs when dealing with loan sharks:
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 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.