Two men, aged 22 and 57 years old and a 59 year-old woman were arrested on Tuesday, 19th September on suspicion of illegal money lending and money laundering, following an operation in Manor Park, Newham.
The England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) working in partnership with London Borough of Newham’s Trading Standards Department and the Metropolitan Police Service executed a warrant at a residential address, seizing documentation, a quantity of cash and electronic devices.
The suspects were released under investigation whilst enquiries continue.
Tony Quigley, Head of the England Illegal Money Lending Team, said:
“We will continue to work with local authorities and the police to combat loan sharks. These criminals cause untold misery amongst our local communities.
“If you’ve been issued a loan with no paperwork or are receiving threats over a loan you have already paid off, please get in touch with IMLT on 0300 555 2222. Your call will be handled by a trained IMLT officer and all information will be treated in the strictest confidence.”
Councillor Forhad Hussain, Cabinet Member for Crime and Anti-social Behaviour at Newham Council, said:
“Illegal money lenders prey on people in financial need for their own gain and throw our families into greater hardship without a legal safety net. We will not allow this bullying and criminal behaviour and we will work with our partners to target those who think they are above the law and can get away with it.
“We urge our residents to use reputable companies such as MoneyWorks, which offers great saving and borrowing opportunities.”
Nationally, Illegal Money Lending Teams have secured more than 380 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 328 years’ worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £72.5 million worth of illegal debt and helped over 27,000 people.
To report a loan shark:
Call the 24/7 confidential hotline 0300 555 2222
Text a report to 078600 22116
Visit the website www.stoploansharks.co.uk
Private message us on www.facebook.com/stoploansharksproject