KUALA LUMPUR: Bukit Aman has warned the public to refrain from working with ah long, or face the consequences.
Federal Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director Comm Datuk Mohd Kamarudin Md Din said between Jan and Sept this year, 644 illegal money lending cases were investigated.
"Although various eradication activities were conducted, these syndicates continue their activities because we believe there is still demand among borrowers.
"Recently, we have found that these syndicates now offer those debtors to work off their debts with the syndicates.
"Two such cases involving two victims were detected in Sabah so far," he said in a statement on Wednesday (Oct 13).
He said investigations revealed the syndicates would offer victims to work with them under two circumstances.
"Those who could not get approval to borrow money from the ah long would be offered jobs as paint splashers, or deliver threat notices and would be paid for their work.
"They would also offer those who could not settle their debts to work it off based on the work they do for the syndicates," he said, reminding the public that those who worked with the syndicate willingly or were coerced into working with them were committing crimes.
He said action could be taken against those working with ah long under Section 5(2) and Section 29B(1) of the Money Lenders Act 1951 for conducting money lending activities without a licence and causing disruptions to borrowers respectively.
"They could also be taken action under Section 506 of the Penal Code for criminal intimidation as well as Section 427 of the Penal Code for committing mischief and causing damage.
"Action could also be taken under Section 436 of the Penal Code for committing mischief by fire or explosives," he said, adding that preventive action could also be taken under the Prevention of Crime Act 1959.
Comm Mohd Kamarudin urged the public to refrain from borrowing money from unlicensed money lenders.
"The public is also reminded not to work or help these ah long to commit disturbances or mischief even if they were coerced to do so," he said.