3 men allegedly sent between 50k to 150k SMSes daily on behalf of unlicensed moneylending syndicates

Three men, aged between 22 and 26, were arrested for allegedly assisting in businesses of unlicensed moneylending syndicates.

The police said in a statement that the Criminal Investigation Department and Police Intelligence Department conducted simultaneous raids at several locations island-wide and arrested the three men on Nov 29.

They are believed to have facilitated the activities of unlicensed moneylending syndicates by sending unsolicited SMSes using Singapore-registered mobile numbers to offer loans from unlicensed moneylenders.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the men had sent about 50,000 to 150,000 SMSes daily on behalf of the unlicensed moneylending syndicates to random Singapore-registered mobile numbers between Sept 1 and Nov 6.

A laptop a modem pool, mobile phones and more than 600 SIM cards were seized from the men during the operation.

Two of the three men will be charged in court on Dec 1. Investigations against the third man are ongoing.

Under the Moneylenders Act 2008, first-time offenders found guilty of carrying on or assisting in a business of unlicensed moneylending will face up to four years' jail, a fine of between $30,000 and $300,000, and up to six strokes of the cane.

The police said they will continue to take tough enforcement actions against those involved in unlicensed moneylending businesses, regardless of their roles, and ensure they face the full brunt of the law.

Members of the public are advised to stay away from unlicensed moneylenders and not to work or assist them in any way.

Call the police at '999' or the X-Ah-Long hotline at 1800-924-5664 if you suspect or know of anyone who could be involved in unlicensed moneylending activities.