A man has been arrested on suspicion of illegal money lending and money laundering, following an operation in Crewe.
Cash and electronic devices were seized following a raid on a property in the town yesterday (7 November).
A 55 year-old man was taken into custody as part of the operation by the England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) in partnership with Cheshire East Council and Cheshire Police, and has been released under investigation pending further enquiries.
Tony Quigley, Head of the Illegal Money Lending Team, said: “Loan sharks are unscrupulous criminals who prey on vulnerable communities, charging exorbitant rates of interest and using fear and intimidation to recover monies ‘owed’.
“This criminal behaviour will not be tolerated in Cheshire and we will continue to work with our council and police partners to eradicate illegal money lenders from communities.
“We urge victims of loan sharks to contact us in confidence on 0300 555 2222 and help us bring those responsible to justice.”
Councillor Ainsley Arnold, Cheshire East Council cabinet member with responsibility for trading standards, said: “We will not tolerate loan sharks operating in our area and preying on vulnerable people.
“Our trading standards team works closely with the national illegal money lending team and police to take robust action against loan sharks and will respond to any such report made by residents.
“We understand that some people may feel they have no other option but to go to a loan shark for money – but we would urge anyone in this position to speak to your local Citizens Advice service and get professional advice and support.”