Wednesday, March 4, 2015   

27 arrested for loan-sharking activities
(08-07 13:20)

Anti-triad detectives say they have smashed an "aggressive" loansharking syndicate which operated under the disguise of loan referral companies.
Investigators say the gang charged interest rates as high as 500 percent per annum.

Police believe several hundred people have fallen victims to the gang. They arrested 27 suspects.

The Kwai Tsing chief inspector, Chan Tai-wai, says gang members would make cold calls to potential clients offering loans at low interest rates.

He said victims would then be lured into signing referral contracts which states that no charges would be incurred on any unsuccessful loan applications.

However, Chief Inspector Chan said the contract also stipulates - in very small prints - that the applicants need to pay a very high "consultation" fee.

He said those who refused to pay would be harrassed and escorted to cash machines to withdraw money to cover the cost of the so-called consultation fee. --RTHK   
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