A man has been arrested on suspicion of illegal money lending and money laundering following an operation in Coventry.
Documentation, electronic devices and cash were seized when a warrant was executed at a residential address in the Wood End area yesterday (December 4).
A 51-year-old man was also arrested as part of the operation by the England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) in partnership with Coventry City Council Trading Standards and West Midlands Police.
The suspect is currently being questioned by IMLT officers in custody.
Tony Quigley, Head of the Illegal Money Lending Team, said: “Loan sharks are unscrupulous criminals who prey on vulnerable communities, charging exorbitant rates of interest and using fear and intimidation to recover monies ‘owed’.
“This criminal behaviour will not be tolerated in Coventry and we will continue to work with our Council and police partners to eradicate illegal money lenders from communities.
“We urge victims of loan sharks to contact us in confidence on 0300 555 2222 and help us bring those responsible to justice.”
Councillor Abdul Salam Khan, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Policing and Equalities, said: “Illegal money lending leads to misery for many people and I am pleased that, together with our partners, and with help from the general public we are working to bring these criminals to justice.
“At the same time I’d like to remind people that there are agencies across the city who work hard to provide support on personal budgeting, and I’d encourage people to get in touch to find out what help is available.”
Advice on Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support, free school meals and other local welfare support is available at www.coventry.gov.uk/benefits or on 024 7683 1800.
Nationally, Illegal Money Lending Teams have secured more than 382 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 329 years’ worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £73.7 million worth of illegal debt and helped over 28,000 people.
To report a loan shark: