By Cheryl Tay:
The Singapore Police Force has charged two male Chinese Singaporeans for operating an unlicensed moneylending business, in violation of the Moneylenders Act. The legal action was taken after the police had collaborated closely with the Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) on the case.
The first accused person is a Key Executive Officer and Director, 44, of a licensed estate company and is also a registered salesperson. He allegedly issued loans ranging from S$5,000 to S$15,000 to sellers of HDB flats.
The sellers were then supposed to repay the loans with interest from the profits gained when the sales of the flats had been completed.
He will be charged with four counts of operating a moneylending business without a licence under the Moneylenders Act, (Rev Ed 2010), Chapter 188.
Meanwhile, the second person, a 50-year-old former property agent will be charged for assisting in the unlicensed moneylending business.
The CEA and the Singapore Police Force warned property agents involved in unlicensed moneylending activities and who take advantage of HDB flat sellers that it will "not hesitate to prosecute such offenders in court."
Once convicted under the Moneylenders Act, the accused may be fined not less than S$30,000 and up to S$300,000 (for each charge) and face up to four years' imprisonment, as well as not more than six strokes of the cane.
The CEA advised the public to report errant property agents and salespersons that engage in unlicensed moneylending or assist unlicensed moneylenders in their criminal activities.
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