Loan Shark sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court

LOAN SHARK - Lorna Arlene Llewellyn was sentenced today at Cardiff Crown Court and received a four month prison sentence, suspended for 2 years and ordered to work 200 hours of unpaid community service.

Ms Llewellyn was also ordered to pay back £12,302 through proceeds of crime legislation by December 2017 or face an additional 6 months imprisonment.

The court heard that Ms Llewellyn, 54, a care worker from Bedwas Road in Caerphilly was lending money illegally between 2013 and 2017 to her colleagues that worked with her at a care home in Caerphilly.

On February 8th2017, the Wales Illegal Money Lending Unit executed a warrant at her home with Gwent Police

When interviewed by officers she denied lending money but said that she ‘helped her friends out, through the goodness of her heart. "

At Cardiff Crown court today, summing up the case, Judge Gaskill told Ms Llewellyn that she worked at a care home and her colleagues needed money and borrowed money in the anticipation that they could pay the money back.

"You knew these people and you knew they were vulnerable," said Judge Gaskill.

The judge added, "You charged 30% interest a week, so the amount of interest over a year would have been massive. You charged them £15 every time there was a late payment and if they couldn't make that payment you charged an additional £25.

"In one case £650 was borrowed and they repaid £3,220 and the victim was told that she owed an additional £2000.

"In another case, there were three loans of £100 and they repaid £970 and this victim was told that she still owed £2000. You made a substantial amount of money from interest.

"Having regards for your good previous good character and guilty plea at the first available opportunity your prison sentence will be suspended for two years."

Stephen Grey who managed the Wales Illegal Money lending Unit praised the victims that came forwards to give evidence to assist the investigation.

Mr Grey said: "Borrowing money from loan sharks is the worst possible option. They are unregulated and can charge what they like and the debts soon spiral out of control. The stereotype of a loan shark is often portrayed as a man wielding a baseball bat. The reality is far different. Loan sharks are often women who use influence and use grooming techniques to get what they want. This case is an example of this."

Ms Llewellyn was also ordered to pay £4338 in costs with a victim surcharge of £80.