Pretty women scare tactic - Malaysia Crime Infonet

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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Pretty women scare tactic

KUALA LUMPUR (24/01/2017): L oan sharks are sending attractive young women to defaulters’ workplaces to pressure them into settling their loans. MCA’s Public Services and Complaints Department head, Datuk Seri Michael Chong, told the New Straits Times that this was the latest “psy-strategy” adopted by loan sharks.

“What would your colleagues or employees think when they see a pretty young woman in a short skirt waiting in the office or reception area to see you? “It can be extremely embarrassing, even before they say they are from a debt-collection agency. 

If they don’t introduce themselves, or worse, the loan sharks send a different woman every day, everyone would think that the borrower was having one or more extramarital affairs.” Chong, who admitted that it was a genius strategy, said borrowers would rush to settle their debts for fear of “losing face”, whether as defaulters or adulterers. 

He said the tactic surfaced two to three years ago, and his centre had received 20 to 30 complaints on it. Last year, 15 complaints were lodged at the centre on loan sharks who used this strategy. Chong said such “agents” usually employed more than one woman for the purpose.

He said the centre recorded 639 complaints on loan sharks last year, involving RM59 million in debts, the highest in his 30-year career in handling public complaints. This breaks down to two or three complaints on loan sharks a day, among the 2,000 to 2,500 complaints he handled last year. “I’ve received 22 cases, involving more than RM1 million in debts, in less than 15 days into this year.” 

He said only an estimated 20 per cent of the cases he handled related to loan sharks, violence or nuisance were reported to police. “The cases involving violence are extremely rare. They prefer using psychological tactics than beating up people.” 

He said a case in Johor, where a group was arrested for abducting and beating loan defaulters in a soundproof room, was an isolated one.

Other cases include those where debtors have their houses or cars splattered with red paint, the signature “calling card” of loan sharks, as well as instances where they enter defaulters’ homes and refuse to leave, hurling profanities at the latter to “break” them into paying.

Chong said the centre’s studies showed that 75 per cent of those in debt were gamblers, mostly from the Chinese community. He said the gamblers had, among others, lost the cash they borrowed to cover their losses.

He said these days, most debtors lose money on online betting platforms rather than football games, for example. Chong said the remaining 25 per cent were those who had invested in get-rich-quick schemes and lost the money. 

He said this group of debtors largely comprised those from Malay and Indian communities. He called on lawmakers to enact legislation that would subject those who take out loans with Ah Long (loan sharks) to punishment as a deterrent.

Retrieved from New Straits Time Online
Pretty women scare tactic Reviewed by Unknown on Tuesday, January 24, 2017 Rating: 5 KUALA LUMPUR (24/01/2017): L oan sharks are sending attractive young women to defaulters’ workplaces to pressure them into settling thei...

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