A loan shark from Caerphilly kept £30,000 stuffed in pillow cases under his bed.
Gareth Jenkins, 63, from Caerphilly has been ordered to pay three victims £66,000 in compensation in a first for Wales's Illegal Money Lending Unit.
Jenkins was prosecuted for four offences of loan sharking over a 10 year period. When the unit raided Jenkins’ home, £30,000 was found stuffed in pillow cases under his bed with £61,000 recovered from two bank accounts.
If anyone thinks that a loan shark is operating near them they're urged to call the Wales Illegal Money Lending Unit on 0300 123 3311. All calls are confidential.
Loan sharks are leading to distress, worry and the loss of more money says Communities & Tackling Poverty Minister Jeff Cuthbert. His comments come as part of the launch of the 'Don't Get Bitten' campaign.
The project aims to open up the debate around illegal money lenders and find solutions to the growing trend of people in Wales seeking financial help from loan sharks.
A campaign launched between Community Housing Cymru (CHC) and the Wales Illegal Moneylending Unit (WIMLU) aims to find solutions to the problem of illegal money lenders.
The campaign is being supported by The Archbishop of Wales Barry Morgan, Assembly Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty Jeff Cuthbert AM and Sian Williams of Toynbee Hall.
A advert designed to illustrate how people can find themselves in debt after going to illegal money lenders has been released. It's all part of the 'Don't Get Bitten' campaign, which launches today.
The 'Don't Get Bitten' campaign launches today. It aims to combat the problem of illegal money lenders.
Across Wales there has been an increase in the number of people turning to illegal money lenders to help make ends meet.
Figures from the Wales Illegal Money Lending Unit (WIMLU) suggest a dramatic increase in the number of people in Wales turning to loan sharks. One case being investigated by WIMLU involves over 400 victims across South Wales.