‘Debt collectors’ hired by loan sharks nabbed

Important evidence: Comm Mior Faridalathrash (third from left) showing some of the items seized at a press conference in Ipoh.

IPOH: Two syndicates, hired by loan sharks to threaten debtors, have been busted with the arrest of six people here and in Manjung.

Perak police chief Comm Datuk Mior Faridalathrash Wahid said police arrested three people, including a woman, at a rented room in Bercham on Feb 16 and three men near a petrol kiosk in Manjung on Feb 24.

Comm Mior Faridalathrash said the syndicates’ modus operandi was similar whereby they would throw red paint at the houses of those believed to have borrowed money from loan sharks.

“They would take videos of the act and use them to threaten the debtors, ” he said at a press conference here yesterday.

“They would also paste notices on the front gates warning the borrowers to pay off their debts, ” he said, adding that several mobile phones, red paint and clothing were seized during the arrests.

He said the first syndicate began operating in March last year while the second group started at the end of last year.

He said the police launched an investigation after receiving reports on two incidents involving paint-throwing and threatening notices here on Feb 16 and 24.

Comm Mior Faridalathrash said the three suspects, aged between 21 and 39, from the first group had 36 prior criminal cases between them.

“One of them alone has a record of 25 cases, including committing vehicular thefts, mischief, gang robbery, burglary and drug-related offences, ” he said, adding that all had been remanded for four days.

“Two of the three suspects from the second group, aged between 16 and 42, have four previous cases between them, ” he added.

Comm Mior Faridalathrash said the police welcomed information and cooperation from the public on loan shark activities near their areas.

He also advised the people to refrain from borrowing money from any individuals or unlicensed companies they found on the Internet.

On a separate matter, Comm Mior Faridalathrash said police seized cryptocurrency mining equipment worth about RM500,000 during raids at four premises in Tapah on Thursday.

He said these included 221 cryptocurrency mining machines, power supplies, servers, main switches, monitors, computer units, modems and cables.

“The machines were running when we raided the premises but there was no one around.

“Those renting out their premises to tenants must take note of the kind of operations that are being run, ” he added.

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