Lee instructs gov‘t to study ways to sue loan sharks on behalf of victims
President Lee Myung-bak instructed the government Wednesday to study ways to sue loan sharks and proceed with lawsuits on behalf of their victims to help them recoup illegally charged interest.
The instruction underscores Lee's determination to root out illegal private loans with outrageous interest rates. Lee vowed earlier this week to use every possible means to combat the practice, calling it "one of the most serious violations that eats away at our society."
The government launched a war on loan sharks last month, opening call centers across the nation to collect and investigate reports of financial and other damage from loan sharks, such as violating the upper limit of 30 percent on interest rates, and threats and assaults by private moneylenders.
During a visit to one of those call centers, Lee stressed that victims of illegal private loans are among the most vulnerable people in society and unable to proceed with such suits against illegal lenders.
Therefore, the government should get more actively involved, he said.
"We have to provide victims with thorough, complete services," Lee said. "Victims must be grateful just because they are given counseling ... But we should not think we did enough work for them. We have to handle such work until the end, thinking that we are the victims." (Yonhap)