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Jury to decide on Great Sankey illegal loans case
2:31pm Wednesday 16th October 2013 in News
THE jury in the trial of a Great Sankey man accused of running a loan business illegally have retired to consider a verdict.
John Radford, aged 57, of Park Road, is on trial as the ‘centre piece’ of what Chester Crown Court heard was a business which brought in more than £100,000 in cash.
But Radford told the trial he had been in contact with the Office for Fair Trading (OFT) when he changed his business details from John Radford Credit and Loan Company to Sherlock Finance Company Limited.
He had successfully applied for a five year licence to lend money from the OFT in 2005.
But when police and Illegal Money Lending Team officers raided the home of Radford on March 14 last year they found paperwork which showed he had continued to offer thousands of pounds in loans after the five year licence expired.
Yet in court Radford told of the ‘toing and froing’ with the OFT and how he was told he could continue trading.
He is accused of recruiting Sindy Hope, of Castle Rise, Runcorn, and Paul Holman, of Redpoll Grove, Liverpool, to offer 'hundred and hundreds' of cash loans without a licence.
All three defendants deny charges of running an illegal money lending business.
During the two week trial the jury heard from a large number of people who had taken out loans through Sherlock Finance Company Limited.
Many spoke of how they were often not given copies of their loan agreements and some said they were not given a payment book to help keep them informed on how much they still owed.
In many cases they were charged between 90 to 100 per cent interest on their initial loans.
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