Tue, November 30, 2021

in-focus

Police swoop in on shady loan-sharking operation in Samut Sakhon


Police arrested eight people on Wednesday for allegedly running a loan shark business in Samut Sakhon’s Mahachai sub-district and have launched a manhunt for those behind the set-up.

Police swoop in on shady loan-sharking operation in Samut Sakhon

Also confiscated were assets including 35 laptops, 30 smartphones and a list of debtors.

Police said they had received complaints about unreasonably high-interest rates demanded under the Yoo Card smartphone application.

“While investigating, we learned that Am [not her real name] is working with a Chinese businessperson to grant loans via smartphone apps,” police said.

“Hence, we requested a search warrant to check on a building from where the operators were running a debt collection agency.”

Police swoop in on shady loan-sharking operation in Samut Sakhon

Police said the suspects were caught on the second and third floor, adding that the first floor was being turned into a coffee shop to disguise the operation.

The suspects said they were responsible for collecting debt from people who borrowed money via the Uwallet, Ant Loan, Yoo Yoo Card, Majic Card and Bee Bath smartphone apps.

“The suspects also explained that they granted loans of up to Bt5,000 at a daily interest rate of 0.05 per cent as well as a 39 per cent service charge. Borrowers are given just seven days to repay their debt,” police said.

Police swoop in on shady loan-sharking operation in Samut Sakhon

Investigators found that more than 15,000 people had fallen victim to the scam, with funds of several million in circulation.

“The Centre for the Investigation of Transnational Environmental Crimes will continue hunting for those behind the scam,” police added.

Published : March 17, 2021

By : The Nation