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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Loan sharks drive man to attempt suicide

Sulaiman Kamal | 4:01 AM | | | Best Blogger Tips

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A. Sacitheran, seen here with his youngest daughter Fiona, shows one of the police reports he had lodged against loan sharks threatening him.
TWO months ago, A. Sacitheran reached a point when he could no longer stand being hunted down by five different Ah Long (loan sharks) at the same time.

"They demanded RM300,000 from me. So I drank insecticide in a bid to commit suicide," said the 36-year-old father of three children, including one with Down's Syndrome.

The hardship faced by Sacitheran that led to his suicide bid was due to his involvement with illegal moneylenders who made him feel like a fugitive.

Sacitheran, who was warded at Sultan Ismail Hospital, Johor Baru, for two months following his suicide bid, said he was unable to settle his large loan.

"I first got involved with the Ah Long when the construction company I worked for suffered RM1.3 million in losses in 2009," he said.

"A contractor persuaded me to borrow from several Ah Long and acquaintances in order to pay back the losses."

However, Sacitheran claimed his effort to auction off items in the contruction company failed because that same contractor who advised him to borrow money had allegedly broken into his workplace and run off with items worth almost RM300,000.

"I later demanded compensation from the contractor for his crime but he did not entertain me."

From that point, things turned for the worse as Sacitheran and his family were evicted from their Taman Bestari Indah home at the end of 2009.

The family moved to a flat in Kuala Lumpur, and Sacitheran worked as a lorry driver for eight months.

However, the loan sharks traced him to Kuala Lumpur and the family then moved back to Johor.

"I quit work and moved to 11 different locations within a year, including a budget hotel. We were even starving at one point."

Sacitheran is now forced to rely on his father-in-law to fend for his family. His daughters Misha, 9, and Pauline, 12, dropped out of school two months ago.

His youngest daughter Fiona, 8, who suffers from Down's Syndrome is unable to receive medical treatment due to the family's hardship.

"I have lodged more than 10 police reports about the Ah Long threats, the latest one at the Taman Pelangi Indah station on Aug 16."

Johor MCA public complaints bureau chairman, Michael Tay, said Sacitheran's case would be investigated and appropriate action taken to help solve his problem.

Tay said the bureau had so far successfully settled about 30 cases involving victims of Ah Long.

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