15 arrested for loanshark activities

SINGAPORE - A total of 15 people have been arrested for allegedly being involved in loanshark activities.

First time offenders face a fine between $30,000 and $300,000, as well as a jail term of up to four years and up to six strokes of the cane.

The suspects were arrested in three operations.

The first operation carried out on Wednesday and Thursday took place at Woodlands, Jurong West, Kallang, Haig Road, Punggol and River Valley housing estates. This operation resulted in the arrest of four men and eight women, aged 24 to 56.

They are believed to be debtors who opened bank accounts and gave away their Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards and Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) to loansharks to facilitate their businesses.

On Thursday night, police also arrested an 18-year-old male suspect at Jurong West Ave 5 for assisting loanshark syndicates by performing ATM transactions. One ATM card was seized from him.

In the third case, officers arrested two men, aged 31 and 24, at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 9 and Sembawang Crescent. They are believed to be debtors-turned-runners who had given away their ATM cards and Personal Identification Numbers (PIN) to loanshark syndicates.

ljessica@sph.com.sg