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Loan sharks nabbed

By Sapa | Mar 27, 2012 | COMMENTS [ 22 ]

Police recovered 600 pension cards, 114 identity documents and 620 bank cards at the credit providers’ properties

Fifteen Northern Cape credit providers have been arrested for allegedly bullying people and using illegal collection tactics, the National Credit Regulator (NCR) said on Tuesday.

The arrests were made in a joint two-day operation between the regulator and the police, NCR investigations acting manager Zweli Zakwe said in a statement.

“The operation, dubbed 'Project Blitzkrieg', primarily focused on credit providers (both registered and unregistered) who are unlawfully retaining pension cards, bank cards, identity documents and personal identity numbers of their clients as surety,” he said.

“This is a contravention of the National Credit Act.” 

The operation took place in De Aar, Petrusville, Noupoort and Colesberg.

Police searched property belonging to registered credit providers and unregistered lenders, known as “skoppers”.

Zakwe said the operation was part of the NCR’s strategy to ensure all credit providers still complied with the provisions of the act.

“The exploitation of vulnerable and unsuspecting consumers by credit providers will not be tolerated,” he said.

Police recovered 600 pension cards, 114 identity documents and 620 bank cards at the credit providers’ properties.

Zakwe said a similar operation was held in Port Elizabeth in October last year, and three skoppers were prosecuted in March, he said.

“Such operations will be extended to other parts of the country and credit providers are warned that the NCR will not condone these practices.” 

COMMENTS [ 22 ]

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thiefs arrest them all they are pushing people back into the hell fire of poverty nxaa

Mar 27, 2012 12:37 | 0 replies

we must understand that money lending is a business...people are grateful when they are given the money...and not forthcoming when repayment has to be made...where does that leave the lender...taking peoples belongings is a criminal act...what remedies do they have...litigation over petty amounts is not cost effective...also time consuming (small claims court)

Mar 27, 2012 1:23 | 0 replies

RobinH

I failed to see that you included me in your comment above...point of correction, I am not in any way painting them as 'good samaritans'

For your info man, we all need credit...or at least those of as that are not well off...im being practical as I can be on this issue...as a black man growing up under very difficult conditions, I know very well that they do come handy at times...or at least they did...but that does not warrant that they exploit people...like i said above, they run a business...and the way they run it should be regulated thus NCR is taking action...i dont expect you to understand...but if I loan someone R500, I expect them to pay it back...its not a donation and when you signed the contract, it clearly states - loan!

Mar 27, 2012 1:45 | 0 replies

DeCock. One knows they are conducting business. Obviously. But there are moral ways of doing business and then there are other methods that involve broken arms and legs and so on. They aren't called "skoppers" because they play good rugby. They have the living sh!t kicked out of defaulters. Also obvious that one wants money one lends repaid. I am not for a second suggesting that they simply write their losses off. BUT they should abide by laws that protect unsophisticated people. As for :"we all need credit"....... I disagree for the very reasons detailed in my comment above. I don't use credit. Klaar! If I can't afford I don't have. Simple as that. The lifestyle of living according to one's credit rating rating is an aberration we have taken on from the US, where weal th is not determined by what one owns, but by the amount of credit one can raise. An altogether sick way of viewing economics in my opinion. Particularly in a continent such as ours.

Mar 27, 2012 1:59 | 0 replies

@RobinH
Its true, they dont come knocking at your door but instead people go to them - what do you say about cellphone companies that call people daily (without even knowing were the h3ll they get peoples number) convincing you to take a cellphone contract and at the end of the day when you cant pay they threaten legal action on you. No one is forced to take credit and they always explain to you the steps that will be taken if you fail to pay and you agree - so dont blame anyone

Mar 27, 2012 2:30 | 0 replies

TKay: STructurally really the same thing, but just a lot worse. I report such people immediately to the Public Protector's office. Worse even is ones that "subscribe you automatically to their service - with a cost attached - and then you actually have to pay the cost of the SMS saying STOP to unsubscribe. I got one like that yesterday and according to the PPs office they are completely illegal. I would LOVE to know where they get my number!

Mar 27, 2012 2:39 | 0 replies

Very smart and good move I think you should go to Hanover as well. Justice must not smile and laugh with crooks they deserve 10 years in jail.

Mar 27, 2012 2:42 | 0 replies

Government should relax the credit laws and interest to assist the poorer people in our country then we would not have this problem. Banks get stin.king rich from the middle and upper class people, and they should be forced to have assistance schemes fo poorer people.

Mar 27, 2012 2:43 | 0 replies

@MsKinkyakaKamaSutra - Arrest them all together wit the victims (they dont listen)
-----------------------------------------------
Quite a good suggestion.

Mar 27, 2012 2:53 | 0 replies

If u need money you can contact me. I am not a loan shark but a loan chicken.

Mar 28, 2012 3:14 | 0 replies

Promoting the use of credit is already a crime in my book. Add to this exorbitant interest rates charged by these people, and the "good samaritan" image suggested by DeCock and TKay falls a bit flat. The procedure may be explained, but I would suggest that the grayer areas around non-payment are dealt with very superficially and also that the majority of those using such people are pretty unsophisticated and can be easily hoodwinked. I maintain that one should strive to live within one's means without credit if at all possible. In order to achieve that in my own life, I do not own a house (don't want to borrow from a bank), and pay my rent cash. I also do not own a car, but use public transport. I use state health facilities whenever possible. Although I have put 3 children through school and college, I may not be wealthy, but I don't owe anyone anything. If I can't afford something, I do without, and I have tried to instill that in my children.

Mar 27, 2012 1:20 | 0 replies