2 arrested for loanshark harassment

SINGAPORE - Police have arrested two males, aged 18 and 20, for their suspected involvement in loanshark harassment cases.

On August 28, 2013 at 5pm, police officers were performing anti-crime patrol and ground enquiries when they spotted the 18-year-old suspect behaving suspiciously in the vicinity of Jurong East Street 21.

The suspect was placed under arrest following an interview by the officers. A marker pen was recovered nearby and seized.

Through follow up investigations, officers arrested his 20-year-old accomplice in the vicinity of Bedok North Street 3 on the same day at about 9.50pm.

Preliminary investigations revealed that both suspects are believed to be involved in several cases of loanshark harassment committed at housing estates such as Clementi, Redhill, Jurong East, Bukit Ho Swee, Bukit Panjang, Jurong West, Bedok and Tampines.

The 20-year-old suspect is also believed to be responsible for a case of loanshark harassment involving fire in the vicinity of Tampines Street 84 on August 26.

The suspects will be charged in Court on August 30. Under the Moneylenders Act (Revised Edition 2010), first time offenders found guilty of loanshark harassment can be fined up to $50,000. They are also liable to mandatory imprisonment of up to five years and mandatory caning of up to six strokes.

The police said they have "zero tolerance for people who assist loanshark to commit harassment acts that may endanger lives and cause alarm to the community" and will "spare no effort to hunt these offenders down and ensure that they are punished to the fullest extent of the law".