Fulham loan shark sentenced and ordered to pay back almost £25,000
A 49 year old woman who operated as a loan shark in Fulham, has been sentenced to nine months in prison, suspended for two years following a hearing at Isleworth Crown Court. Arlyn Prizada was also ordered to complete 150 hours of unpaid work and pay back all of her available assets, worth £24,842 under proceeds of crime legislation.
Prizada, of Lillie Road pleaded guilty to illegal money lending and money laundering at a hearing in February. She was investigated and prosecuted by the England Illegal Money Lending Team working in partnership with Hammersmith and Fulham Borough Council.
Prizada was arrested in February last year after the England Illegal Money Lending Team executed a warrant at her home. During the search they found more than £12,500 in cash, documentary evidence in relation to the illegal business spanning from 2009 to 2013 and passports and bank cards which did not belong to her.
Her total criminal benefit was valued at £79,000 and nearly £100,000 worth of unexplained deposits went into her bank account between April 2009 and the point of her arrest.
She had been lending without a licence to members of the local Filipino community.
In interview she gave a full admission, telling Illegal Money Lending Team officers that she has loaned money to at least 16 people, and the largest amount was for £2000.
Upon sentencing Judge S Davies said that for over 4 years she had exploited vulnerable people. He noted that she had used bank accounts in other names to conceal her illegal commercial enterprise. It was only due to her particular domestic circumstances that the Judge felt he ought to suspend the custodial sentence passed
Consumer Minister Jenny Willott said “Successful prosecutions like this are really important in sending a clear message to loan sharks. Illegal Lenders exploit the most vulnerable in our communities, using bullying and intimidation tactics which trap them into never ending debts.
“Well done to The National Trading Standards Board and the England Illegal Money Lending Team for getting a positive outcome. If anyone ever comes across a loan shark they should report them immediately so that we can take action to bring them to justice.”
Tony Quigley Head of the England Illegal Money Lending Team said “Loan sharks are a scourge on our communities, profiting at their borrowers expense. We are continuing to crack down on loan sharks and, as this case proves, bring them to justice through the courts. We would urge anyone who has been the victim of a loan shark, or knows of someone who has to call us on 0300 555 2222 so we can take action. The lines are answered 24/7 and all calls are treated in the strictest confidence.”
Nationally the Stop Loan Shark Project has secured more than 310 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 200 years worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £55 million worth of illegal debt and helped nearly 24,000 victims.
To report a loan shark:
Call the 24/7 confidential hotline 0300 555 2222
Text ‘loan shark + your message’ to 60003
Private message us on www.facebook.com/stoploansharksproject
For more information contact Sarah-Jane Lynch, Illegal Money Lending Team communications officer, on 0121 693 1030 or 07881617119 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To speak to the National Trading Standards Board with a more general enquiry please contact the Trading Standards Institute press office on 0845 6089430 or email@example.com.
Notes to editors
The National Trading Standards Board is a group of senior and experienced local government heads of trading standards, representing all trading standards services across England and Wales. The Board has been set up by the Government as part of changes to the consumer protection landscape and an enhanced role for trading standards.
The National Trading Standards Board provides leadership influence, support and resources to help combat consumer and business detriment locally, regionally and nationally.
The Stop Loan Sharks Project consists of three Illegal money lending teams in England, Scotland and Wales. The National Trading Standards Board has responsibility for the England and Wales Illegal Money Lending Teams that are hosted by Birmingham City Council and Cardiff Council. There are separate arrangements in place in Scotland.
Nationally, Illegal Money Lending Teams have secured more than 310 prosecutions for illegal money lending and related activity, leading to nearly 200 years’ worth of custodial sentences. They have written off £55 million worth of illegal debt and helped nearly 24,000 people.
The Illegal Money Lending Teams in England and Wales work in partnership with local Trading Standards Authorities in their related countries. They consist of specialist officers who investigate and prosecute illegal money lending and related activity and LIAISE officers who support victims and raise awareness of the dangers of borrowing from illegal money lenders.