OFFICERS investigating allegations of illegal money lending and money laundering are appealing for victims to come forward.

The appeal comes after the England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT), working in partnership with West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service and West Yorkshire Police, executed warrants at two properties in Huddersfield last month.

Officers seized cash and documentation during the searches of the properties on 29 June, and the suspects were released under investigation.

Officers are keen to speak with anyone who may have had a loan or have information which can assist.

Anyone who has had a loan has not done anything wrong, police add.

Some signs of illegal money lending, officers say, include:

  • A cash loan or bank transfer with no paperwork, such as a credit agreement or record of payments.
  • The lender refuses to give information about the loan, such as the interest rate or how much you owe.
  • You are forced to hand over your bank card and personal items as “security” on the loan.
  •  A debt which keeps growing even though you’re making payments.
  •  You borrowed from someone you thought was a friend.
  •  The lender turned "nasty" and threatened you when you couldn’t pay.

Tony Quigley, Head of the England Illegal Money Lending Team, said: “Our investigation is at an early stage, however we urge anyone who may have information about illegal money lending activity in the area to come forward.

"Even the smallest information may be crucial to our investigation and we can provide support to people affected. 

“Our advice to residents is please don’t use a loan shark to borrow money, even if you think they’re a friend – they usually start out being friendly, but take a lot of money off vulnerable people.

“We have provided specialist support to over 30,000 people and helped them get their lives back on track.

"If you have been affected by illegal lending or are concerned that someone you know is being targeted, our helpline is available 24/7 on 0300 555 2222, and you can live chat with us at”