KUALA LUMPUR: Singapore police smashed a loan shark syndicate in the republic on Thursday and arrested 11 men aged between 29 and 36.
Investigations revealed that the syndicate had recruited people from neighbouring countries such as Malaysia to carry out their harassment activities by placing advertisements for "financial assistants" in the Malaysian media.
The syndicate is believed to have illegal loans in circulation estimated at about S$200,000, (RM507,000) with at least 200 debtors.
This syndicate is also believed to have been responsible for more than 150 harassment cases in the republic for the past two years.
Following intensive intelligence probes by the Police Intelligence Department, officers conducted simultaneous raids in Ang Mo Kio, Choa Chu Kang, Hougang, Yishun, Yio Chu Kang and Macpherson.
Police seized about S$50,000 cash, 40 mobile phones, nine laptops, Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards, bank books, SIM cards, computer equipment as well as records of illegal loans.
Police have also frozen 31 bank accounts, believed to have been used by the syndicate members.
Criminal Investigation Department director Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police Hoong Wee Teck said: "We will continue to come down hard on all such syndicate members.
"Those who try to recruit foreigners to do their bidding will not get away scot-free."