Loan sharks to be targeted

LOAN-sharks who exploit people in Suffolk will be targeted during a crackdown on unscrupulous lending in the county.A specialist illegal money lending team is set to receive £302,000 to extend its operations and hunt down loan sharks across the east and south east of England, and one of its new bases will be in Suffolk.

LOAN-sharks who exploit people in Suffolk will be targeted during a crackdown on unscrupulous lending in the county.

A specialist illegal money lending team is set to receive £302,000 to extend its operations and hunt down loan sharks across the east and south east of England, and one of its new bases will be in Suffolk.

Since 2006 the team's projects have helped more than 2,000 people with debt problems in the east of England, including many victims of loan sharks, and trained more than 20 new debt advisors.

Victims are not only charged astronomical interest rates but very often face violence, intimidation or blackmail if they fall behind with payments.

John Hutton the secretary of state for business, enterprise and regulatory reform, said: "Loan sharks are criminals who prey on vulnerable and desperate people. We are committed to shutting these thugs down and bringing them to justice.

"Our targeted teams will make sure anyone who feels trapped or scared has the confidence to report these crooks and put a stop to their illegal behaviour.

Most Read

“We are determined to make it is as hard as possible for these crooks to prosper and have invested nearly £50 million into providing financial help and advice for those traditionally vulnerable to this type of exploitation."

As a result of the extra cash investigators will focus some of their efforts on Lowestoft, working with voluntary organisations in the town to help people in difficult situations and prosecute loan sharks.

Have you been the victim of a loan-shark? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter