8 members from loanshark syndicate arrested

SINGAPORE - Police have arrested eight members of a loansharking syndicate in an islandwide raid held on Tuesday.

One woman and seven men, aged 30 and 52, are believed to have taken part in loanshark activities.

The raids at Orchard Road, Hougang, Choa Chu Kang, Circuit Road and Marina Way were carried out by officers from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and the Police Intelligence Department.

Cash amounting to more than $5,000 as well as an assortment of loansharking-related paraphernalia, including Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards, mobile phones, laptops, thumb-drives, SIM cards, bank security tokens and transaction slips were seized as case exhibits.

Three of the suspects were believed to have assisted the loansharking syndicate by issuing loans, collecting repayments from borrowers and sourcing for potential borrowers from their operating centres based overseas. The syndicates is believed to have delivered threatening notes to demand for payment from borrowers.

All eight suspects will be charged in Court on Wednesday and face chargers under the Moneylenders Act. If convicted, each of them could be fined between $30,000 to $300,000. They can also face jail terms of between four to six years, and may also be punished with up to six strokes of the cane.

ljessica@sph.com.sg