Don’t ever agree to be a guarantor

Don’t ever agree to be a guarantor
TROUBLE: Mandy (not her real name), 62, was a guarantor for friends who took money from a loan shark. She ended up becoming a runner for the loan shark and was jailed for two years.

SINGAPORE - She had just harassed a loanshark debtor who was also her friend.

She thought she had done so discreetly, but soon after, she received an SMS from the friend.

It read: "I know it was you who padlocked my gate. Just wait for the police to call."

Jail time followed and now that she is out, she is trying to warn others about the pitfalls of being a loanshark runner.

Mandy (not her real name) is a 62-year-old housewife who stood as guarantor for her friends with the loan shark.

When one could not settle his debts, she became a runner for the Ah Long.

Mandy said she was jailed for two years last May and she wants her story to be a warning to others.

Her problems started in 2009, when she was the guarantor for five friends who borrowed $1,000 each from the loan shark.

"They were required to pay an interest of $400 for each $1,000 and this is cumulative should they not repay in time, and they didn't," Mandy said.

The Ah Long waited a year before he did anything and instead of going after the debtors, he went after Mandy.

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