AG Hill sues debt collection agency, accusing it of operating illegally, abusive practice

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill is suing a debt collection agency and its owner for illegally operating in the state and allegedly engaging in “deceptive and abusive” practices, according to a complaint filed this month in Lake County Superior Court.

The complaint alleges Nelson Macwan and his Munster, Indiana-based company New Britain Financial worked as a debt collection agency without a license in the state in 2019. It also says the group used abusive practices, including “threatening consumers” with lawsuits and arrest despite not having judgments against them. 

The Indiana Secretary of State declined to renew New Britain Financial’s license in the state after learning of Macwan’s “previous debt collection practices in Illinois,” the complaint says.

The state at the time also cited Macwan’s lack of “good moral character” in its denial of the license, adding that Macwan had been prohibited from operating as a debt collector in Illinois due to “abusive debt collection practices.”

He was sentenced to five months in jail in 2017 for violating that decision, according to the complaint. He continued his debt collection activity after his release.

In a news release Tuesday, Hill said the state is seeking a permanent injunction against Macwan and New Britain Financial, which was established in 2015, that would prevent them from engaging in debt collection in or from Indiana.

Hill also called for restitution to consumers impacted by the company’s alleged practices. 

“Debt collection is a serious business that can have life-changing impacts on consumers’ lives, and it should be carried out only by individuals who bring integrity to the job,” Hill said in a prepared statement. “The allegations against New Britain Financial and its owner are serious, and we aim to permanently prevent them from performing these duties in our state.” 

Contact Lawrence Andrea at 317-775-4313 or landrea@indystar.com. Follow him on Twitter @lawrencegandrea.