Page last updated at 18:39 GMT, Wednesday, 8 July 2009 19:39 UK

Lender's customer feared for life

John Kiely
Mr Kiely denies five counts of blackmail

A woman who borrowed money from an alleged loan shark feared she would be killed unless she made repayments, a court has heard.

Donna Ockerby told Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court she moved away from the city because she so afraid of John Kiely and his debt collectors.

She had borrowed £300 to pay for a wedding dress, the jury heard.

Mr Kiely, 36, of Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire, denies five counts of blackmail and other offences.

Mrs Ockerby said that when a concrete slab was thrown through the window of her home in Openshaw, east Manchester, she decided to move away from the area.

'Ended up dead'

"I've lived in Manchester all my life. I was born and bred there, my grandkids were there, my son's buried there but I just knew that things were getting on top and I knew either I would have ended up dead, or my husband or my daughter."

Bekky Hargreaves, Donna Ockerby's daughter, claimed her daughter was born a month prematurely because of the stress Mr Kiely put her under.

The mother-of-two said she borrowed £200 to buy baby equipment in May 2007 and repaid the loan but had no documentation or written details of the interest rate.

Ms Hargreaves said that no collectors came to her house for months and then suddenly Mr Kiely arrived and demanded money.

She said she was left so petrified she barricaded herself into the house with her two children.

The jury was told Mr Kiely had made £2.9m profit in five years with the interest charged on some loans equalling 2,437%.

The trial continues.



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