Will the borrower be processed?

As reported, on May 24, a line of high interest loans through the app and debt collection with nearly 300 participants was coordinated by the Criminal Police Department (Hanoi City Police) in collaboration with the Criminal Police Department. (Ministry of Public Security) and professional units to dismantle. The police agency has identified the leaders, managers and operators of the line, including foreigners. This line has been operating since 2019, hiding in the shadow of a pawnbroker company.

Nearly 1 million accounts borrow money from cross-border black credit lines: Are borrowers processed?  - Photo 1.
Many subjects in the line of black credit and debt collection activities were prosecuted by the investigative police agency.

This target group uses high-tech apps (applications) to operate high-interest loans and black credit. Customers who need only need to access 3 loan apps set up by Vu’s team and log in with personal information such as full name, address, year of birth, workplace, and phone number…

When the customer is late or does not pay the loan, Vu and the Chinese will distribute the documents to the staff to collect the money. At the same time, the subjects collected “interest on overlap” up to more than 2,000%/year.

Debt collectors will remind by phone, even take the borrower’s contacts to call, crop pictures to send to relatives, friends or post on social networks to exert pressure.

The investigation agency initially clarified that the total amount of money this line lent up to thousands of billion VND, about 100 billion VND per month. In addition, there are nearly 1 million loan accounts through this group’s app.

Talking to PV Infonet about this case, lawyer Hoang Tung (Head of Trung Hoa Law Office, Hanoi) stated: “With the current digital technology era, people are too familiar with the birth of people. of apps – technology applications to serve the needs of life.Of course, there will be useful applications and malicious applications.

Undeniably, the form of lending money through the app brings convenience and speed to individuals in need, but it is also a “double-edged sword” that makes these individuals, even individuals unrelated are also negatively affected”.

Nearly 1 million accounts borrow money from cross-border black credit lines: Are borrowers processed?  - Photo 2.
Lawyer Hoang Tung discussed with PV Infonet about the case.

The lawyer analyzed: “By its very nature, the form of lending money through the app can be divided into two cases: the loan applications act as intermediaries, acting as a bridge between individuals and organizations wishing to lend money. and individuals and organizations that need to borrow; or maybe the loan application is a form of money lending activity of a legitimate credit institution.

Depending on the nature, there will be appropriate legal provisions. The line above hid in the shadow of a pawnbroker company, using apps for loan sharking and black credit – this is not one of the forms of a credit institution under the provisions of the Law on Credit Institutions. 2010. The lending activity through the app of this line will be governed by the law on civil transactions.

The allowable interest rate when borrowing money is currently based on the agreement of the parties but must not exceed 20%/year (Article 468 of the Civil Code 2015). If the money-lending apps belong to credit institutions, the interest rate will be based on the agreement of the parties in accordance with the provisions of the Law on Credit Institutions 2010.

The above line is essentially a pawnbroker company, which is not regulated by the Law on Credit Institutions 2010 but has banking operations. Because it is not a credit institution, the highest lending interest rate between this line and individuals is 20%/year.

The lending with the actual interest rate up to 2,000%/year seriously violates the law on civil transactions. Accordingly, according to the provisions of Article 201 of the Penal Code 2015 amended and supplemented in 2017 on the crime of lending heavy interest in civil transactions, if lending at an interest rate of 05 times or more, the highest interest rate will be charged. (20%/year) and gain illicit profits from VND 30 million to under VND 100 million, or have been administratively sanctioned for this act or have been convicted of this crime, have not had criminal record remission but still Violations shall be subject to a fine of between VND 50 million and under VND 200 million or non-custodial reform for up to 3 years.

If they gain illegal profits from 100 million VND or more, they will be fined from 200 million VND to 1 billion VND or sentenced to between 6 months and 3 years of imprisonment.

In addition, with the act of taking the borrower’s contacts to make annoying phone calls, cropping pictures to send to relatives or friends of the borrower, posting on social networks to pressure this line will also punished. According to the provisions of point g, clause 3, Article 102 of Decree 15/2020/ND-CP, acts of using digital information to threaten or harass others will be fined from 10 to 20 million VND.

“Regarding the responsibilities of the group of borrowers who borrow money through the app of this line, according to the provisions of Article 463 of the Civil Code 2015, the property loan contract is an agreement between the parties, whereby the lender delivers the loan. property to the borrower, when it is due, the borrower must return to the lender property of the same type in the correct quantity and quality and only pay interest if so agreed or prescribed by law.

Whether it is a direct loan or an online loan, the parties have also entered into a civil transaction and may have a credit contract, a consumer loan contract (directly or electronically). Accordingly, the borrower is obliged to repay the loan for the borrowed amount according to the provisions of account 1, Article 466 of the Civil Code.

The evasion or failure to fully fulfill the debt repayment obligation is a violation of the law and will be handled according to the law. Pursuant to Point c, Clause 1, Article 15 of Decree 144/2021/ND-CP, if a person is due to repay another’s loan, despite having the conditions and ability, but deliberately fails to pay, he will be fined from 2 to 3 million dong.

In addition to being administratively sanctioned, based on the nature and extent of debt evasion when borrowing money online, the borrower may also be prosecuted for criminal liability for the crime of abusing trust to appropriate property according to regulations. According to Article 175 of the Penal Code 2015 amended and supplemented in 2017, the penalty can be non-custodial reform for up to 03 years, a fine from 06 months to 12 years”, said lawyer Hoang Tung.

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