KUALA LUMPUR: They may be loan sharks but they are no match for the long arm of the law as 3,211 ah long have been detained since 2010.
Bukit Aman Commercial Crimes Investigation Department (CCID) director Comm Datuk Seri Mohd Zakaria Ahmad said the illegal moneylenders were responsible for 5,655 cases involving RM142mil worth of loans during that period.
“Among those arrested, 1,114 have been prosecuted.
“The number of cases and ah long detained has also spiked since last year, ” he told a press conference at CCID headquarters yesterday.
In 2018,465 loan sharks were detained involving some RM9.7mil worth of loans while this year, 849 were held with RM18mil of loans, he revealed.
Comm Mohd Zakaria also said the CCID had listed last month 117 people wanted in connection with loan shark activities nationwide.
Of the number, 67 had surrendered and been detained.
“We urge the remaining 50 to come forward as soon as possible or we will come for you, ” he warned.
The 50 still at large included 16 in Johor, nine in Melaka and five in Penang, he said.
Comm Mohd Zakaria reminded the public not to deal with unlicensed moneylenders.
“The loan sharks will impose high interest rates on their victims.
“When the victims are unable to make payments, the loan sharks will use aggressive tactics to make them pay up, ” he said.
Meanwhile, Comm Mohd Zakaria said the CCID were looking for 180 people in connection with various commercial crime offences and cases.“We want them to come forward and work with the police, ” he said.
He also revealed that loan scams had resulted in a whopping RM57mil worth of losses nationwide this year, with 4,287 cases recorded from Jan 1 to Nov 10.
“It’s certainly a worrying trend as the number of cases and losses is higher than last year’s.
“In 2018, loan scams resulted in RM35mil in losses.
“But it’s not even the end of 2019 and RM57mil in losses have been recorded, ” he added.
However, Bukit Aman was keeping up its efforts against the scammers and busted 20 syndicates responsible for duping 779 victims into losing RM8mil this year, he noted.
“We also arrested 174 syndicate members, of whom 62 were prosecuted, ” Comm Mohd Zakaria said.
The syndicates’ modus operandi was to contact their victims via text message applications or social media, he added.
“The victims would then be required to make a lot of payments such as processing fees but in the end, they would not get the loan.
“Usually, the victims would end up paying more than the amount of loan they had sought, ” he said.
Comm Mohd Zakaria cited an example of a victim wanting to borrow RM50,000 but ended up paying RM60,000 in “fees”.
“There was also a case where a man paid RM200,000 for a big loan but came away empty-handed, ” he added.