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Filipino maid arrested with employer in police swoop on loan sharks

14 August 2018

By Vir B. Lumicao
Employer was arrested at this corner in North Point
(source: Wikipedia Commmons)

Police have arrested a Hong Kong man and his Filipino domestic helper during an anti-loan-sharking operation in North Point.

A police spokeswoman said the 65-year-old man surnamed Cheung was arrested at noon on Monday, Aug. 13, by officers of the Regional Anti-Triad Unit of Hong Kong Island while lending money to two Filipino women, aged 29 and 37, at the corner of King’s Road and Shu Kuk Street.

The area is notorious for being a meeting place between loan sharks and their prey, mainly foreign helpers needing cash.

The spokeswoman said Cheung was arrested for lending money at excessive interest rates and attempting to manage an unlicensed money lending business.

A search of the man’s flat, also in North Point, reportedly led to the arrest of his 41-year-old Filipina maid on suspicion of assisting in managing an unlicensed money lending business.

Both suspects were reportedly still in custody as of this writing.

Seized from the flat were several passports, bankbooks, other documents, a tablet and $100,000 cash.

The spokeswoman said the arrests came during an anti-loan-sharking operation by police codenamed “Sky Scroller and Thunderbolt 18”.

Records seized reportedly showed Cheung was trying to lend money to seven people at an interest rate of 120% per annum, twice as much as the maximum limit of 60%.

The spokeswoman said Cheung had asked for the borrowers’ passports as collateral.

Other reports said the illicit money lending had been in operation for two years, and targeted mainly Filipino domestic workers on Hong Kong Island.

Police have reportedly not ruled out arresting more people. 
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