Firm in £384,000 case collects a list of complaints

The "loan-shark" firm that lost its legal claim this week for repayment of £384,000 on an initial loan of £5,750 to a Merseyside couple is being challenged by more customers over spiralling debt.

The "loan-shark" firm that lost its legal claim this week for repayment of £384,000 on an initial loan of £5,750 to a Merseyside couple is being challenged by more customers over spiralling debt.

Similar claims involving at least five other customers have followed Thursday's verdict. The company, London North Securities (LNS), was criticised by Judge Nigel Howarth at Liverpool county court for the "grossly exorbitant" terms of a loan that left Tony and Michelle Meadows with a debt 67 times the original amount.

The new complaints concern the "double whammy" of penalty interest added to late payment penalties. In one case a bill for legal costs and building insurance rose from £700 to £10,000 in 10 years.

These incidents of rapidly rising costs and the resulting threats of home repossession have brought misery to numerous households and are consistent with evidence offered against the company at Liverpool county court. The Consumers' Associationbelieves such practices will soon be eradicated as a result of the ruling and planned changes to consumer credit laws which will penalise lenders for mis-selling loans or failing to check customers' ability to repay the money lent.

LNS was established in Finchley, north London, in 1984 by its director Harvey Collis, although its consumer credit licence, permitting the company to lend to the public, lapsed in May. The Consumers' Association, which has been investigating the company, advises anyone lent money by LNS since May to seek legal advice.

Mr Collis is also director of the LNS subsidiary, Broadwick Financial Services, which has a valid licence. This company was involved in a High Court case two years ago over claims that its interest rate charges of 29 per cent were exorbitant.

The activities of LNS were first highlighted by Gordon Marsden, MP for Blackpool South, after complaints from two constituents, Frank and Jeanette Sharratt, who had borrowed £2,240 in 1987 and discovered two years ago that after repaying £10,000 they still owed more than £39,000.

The retired couple complained they were "hounded" for the debt, including receiving 18 calls in a single day.

Another LNS customer, Michael Weber, borrowed £27,000 to develop a business idea.A year later he wanted to repay the loan in full but was told he owed £42,000 ­ a sum that has since spiralled to £320,000.

Mr Collis declined to comment yesterday.

New Articles
tvDownton Abbey Christmas special
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
News
news
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
News
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashion
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Selby Jennings: Oil Operations

    Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...

    The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operations Manager

    £43500 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operatio...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - LONDON

    £20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000 + Car + Pension: SThree: SThree are a ...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

    £20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35K: SThree: We consistently strive to be the...

    Day In a Page

    A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

    Christmas without hope

    Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
    After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

    The 'Black Museum'

    After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
    Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

    Chilly Christmas

    Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
    Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

    'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

    Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
    Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

    Ed Balls interview

    'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
    He's behind you, dude!

    US stars in UK panto

    From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

    What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

    Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
    Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

    Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

    Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
    Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

    Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
    Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

    Autism-friendly theatre

    Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all