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Suspected loan shark under investigation in Croydon

A suspected illegal money lender is under investigation in Croydon.

The England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) worked in partnership with Croydon Council Trading Standards and the Metropolitan Police to execute a warrant at an address in Shirley on Thursday, 30 September.

Officers seized documentation and electronic devices during a search of the property.

Head of IMLT Tony Quigley said: “Illegal money lending is a serious offence and can cause real misery for people and their families already facing financial pressures.

“If you find yourself in need of having to borrow money our advice would always be to check with the Financial Services Register so you make sure a lender is legitimate.

“I would urge anyone with information on loan sharks to contact the team in confidence – together we will rid our communities of this scourge.”

Common warning signs you may be dealing with a loan shark:

  • They refuse to provide you with proper paperwork about your loan – you’re never sure what you owe, or the interest being charged.
  • They refuse to give you information, such as the time left on the loan, or what you’ve repaid so far.
  • They keep adding unfair amounts of interest to the amount you owe so it never goes down.
  • If you miss payments, they’ll use scare tactics such as intimidation and threats to pressure you into paying them.
  • They may take your things if you don’t pay what they want on time.
  • They may withhold your possessions such as your bank card or passport until the debt is repaid.
  • They may pretend to be your friend at first but threaten to tell others about the debt if you fail to pay back money on time. 

If you have been affected by illegal money lending and require support, call the 24/7 Stop Loan Sharks confidential helpline on 0300 555 2222 or chat online with the team at www.stoploansharks.co.uk. Live Chat is available from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.