Two Chinese nationals have been arrested in Pattaya this morning and accused of allegedly running an illegal loan service charging substantially high interest rates through a phone application.
Early this morning a team of the Royal Thai Police from Bangkok have arrested two male Chinese suspects who are LANG ZHU,29, and SONG SONG ZHU, 28. Three other Chinese Nationals associated with the allegedly illegal business were reportedly arrested at a second location, their names were not given to the local Pattaya press.
The two Chinese suspects were arrested at a hotel on Soi 16 on Pattaya – Naklua Road.
The arrest followed an arrest warrant being issued for them in Bangkok over operating a personal loan service without a permit or license and taking over the Thailand legal limit of interest.
According to Region 5 Economic Crime Suppression Division chief Police Col Phadol Chandon some plaintiffs reported that they were harassed and threatened on the phone to pay interest of 22-28 per cent to the company. He added that the investigation began into the group after several complaints were made to Thai police. At this point the source of the operation was tracked to the Pattaya area. The loans were being given through an informal phone application financed by foreign investors according to Phadol.
Police searched a connected building on Central Pattaya Road after obtaining further information from the investigation where they found ten Thais who were reportedly working for the operation.
Officials have seized six bank accounts from both companies with total deposits of over 22 million baht. They also seized 11 laptop computers, 11 desktop computers and 35 mobile phones from the building on Central Pattaya Road.
Phadol stated that the loan service is reportedly being invested by foreigners and has a total of 100 million baht circulated per month. He also stated the Central Investigation Bureau which is corrobating on the case is investigating debt collection companies in Bangkok allegedly connected to the loan company.
The arrested suspects remain in custody. It is unclear if they have admitted to the allegations or if they have retained a lawyer as of press time.
Police noted that anyone who is a victim in this service can call 1599 or 0 2255 1898. The number is manned 24 hours a day.