Tooting man arrested in ‘loan shark’ probe

Published: Wednesday 12th July 17

A 36-year-old man has been arrested in Tooting on suspicion of illegal money lending and money laundering.

The England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) working in partnership with Wandsworth Council’s trading standards team and officers from the Metropolitan Police yesterday (Tuesday) raided a property in Tooting and seized documents and electronic devices.

The suspect was questioned by IMLT officers before being released on bail while enquiries continue.

Tony Quigley, Head of Service for 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.”

Wandsworth’s spokesman on community safety Cllr Jonathan Cook added: “We will continue to support the work of the Illegal Money Lending Team in cracking down on unscrupulous loan sharks who make borrowers lives a misery.

“Loan sharks pose a serious threat to some of the most vulnerable members of society. In extreme cases, violence or intimidation is used to pressure victims into paying money back. That’s why it is so important to stop these criminals from operating in our borough.”

Nationally, Illegal Money Lending Teams have secured more than 378 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 325 years’ worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £71.9 million worth of illegal debt and helped over 26,500 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
Email reportaloanshark@stoploansharks.gov.uk
Private message us on www.facebook.com/stoploansharksproject

Notes to editors:
The National Trading Standards Board is a group of senior and experienced local government heads of trading standards, representing all trading standards services across England and Wales. The Board has been set up by the Government as part of changes to the consumer protection landscape and an enhanced role for trading standards.

The National Trading Standards Board provides leadership influence, support and resources to help combat consumer and business detriment locally, regionally and nationally.

The Stop Loan Sharks Project consists of three Illegal money lending teams in England, Scotland and Wales.  The National Trading Standards Board has responsibility for the England and Wales Illegal Money Lending Teams that are hosted by Birmingham City Council and Cardiff Council. There are separate arrangements in place in Scotland.

Nationally, Illegal Money Lending Teams have secured more than 378 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 325 years’ worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £71.9 million worth of illegal debt and helped over 26,500 victims.

The Illegal Money Lending Teams in England and Wales work in partnership with local Trading Standards Authorities in their related countries. They consist of specialist officers who investigate and prosecute illegal money lending and related activity and LIAISE officers who support victims and raise awareness of the dangers of borrowing from illegal money lenders.

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