4 youths arrested for Singapore loan shark harassment with fire: Four male teenagers between the ages of 15 and 19 were arrested on Wednesday for alleged involvement in a series of recent Singapore loan shark harassment cases which involved the use of fire, according to reports.
On Thursday the police said they were alerted to one of the cases at 2am the previous day in the Jurong East Avenue 1 vicinity. Investigations led the officers to arrest an 18-year-old suspect at his residence in Jurong West at about 4:45pm.
Further investigations then led to three additional suspects being arrested in the Bukit Timah, Geylang Bahru, and Bukit Batok areas later the same evening.
The four teenagers are suspected of being involved in seven counts of loan shark harassment between December 31 of last year and January 8 of this year, all involving the use of fire.
In these cases, the culprits would set fire to items placed in front of residential units such as slippers, newspapers and cloth, according to a report in The Straits Times.
There have been a number of police arrests involving loan shark harassment activities in recent weeks and months in Singapore, including a 12-hour crackdown in late November in which authorities arrested 16 suspects.
The 16 people arrested at that time included 14 males and two females who were allegedly involved in more than 340 loan shark harassment cases throughout Singapore.
In another case in early December, a suspect was arrested who was allegedly involved in over 10 cases of loan shark harassment incidents, at least two of which involved the use of fire.
Singapore law says anyone found operating or assisting in the operation of a loan shark business may be fined S$30,000 to S$300,000, be jailed up to four years, and be caned up to six strokes.
Police have advised the public to stay away from loan sharks and not to work with or assist in their illegal activities in any way.