Recovery of debts can be an arduous job, and maybe for this reason debt collectors hire thugs to intimidate people to get their money back. While some lenders follow the same means, others have turned to a rather different and probably more effective way.
A gang of ageing Chinese women who terrorised people into paying debts in central China’s Henan province have been imprisoned for up to 11 years for using violence and abuse to force people to pay back their debts.
More than 30 elderly women who were hired by small business firms used strong-arm tactics to retrieve debts and meddle in financial disputes. Among the tactics used were cursing, spitting, intimidating with megaphones for days and even stripping off and grabbing their victim’s genitals. According to local police, the average age of the gang members is 50, and the oldest woman is 70 years old. The women were paid a commission of 200 yuan (around 2000 Rs) for each job.
One of the gang members, a blind woman who was sentenced to five-year imprisonment told The Beijing News that the lenders hired them because people don’t want to argue with women, the disabled and the elderly. One of the victims said that they would tear off the clothes of female victims and strip off their own clothes before confronting men, apparently to suggest that they had been sexually assaulted.
In one case, ten of the women surrounded a man’s house for six straight days, forcing him to move out to make way for a new property development. Another victim named Zhang said one of the women grabbed his genitals, causing an injury which cost him 1000 yuan in medical bills, according to the report.
Apart from the ‘elderly enforcers’, debt collectors also hired HIV patients to get back their money. A 60-year-old man told Beijing Youth Daily that he always displays his medical record showing he has HIV to debtors as an intimidation tactic. “They just want you to go away quickly and not sit in their homes,” the man said. He further added that he receives 100 yuan per day for his services.
Information source: The Quartz
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