HALTON Borough Council Trading Standards has launched a series of animations to raise awareness of issues including loan sharks, counterfeiting and situations where people can be taken advantage of when experiencing difficulties.

The animations were funded by a sale of a vehicle that was seized from a man selling counterfeit vodka.

The car was sold at auction and the money was used to produce the short films which have now been circulated to partners, including doctor's surgeries, to help get the message out.

Executive board member for Trading Standards, Cllr Dave Cargill, said: "We probably all know somebody who has been affected by loan sharks or those who are only too ready to take advantage of us when we’re not at our best.

"Hopefully, by watching the animations, those who are affected by these criminals will be able to recognise that what is happening to them is wrong and that there are people here to help. Counterfeiting is often thought to be a victimless crime – the animation shows that this isn’t true.

"It is appropriate that the seized assets of a counterfeits seller have been used to raise awareness of the danger of counterfeit goods.”

Watch the animations here.

To report a loan shark call the 24/7 confidential hotline on 0300 555 2222 or text 0786002216.

Visit stoploansharks.co.uk, email reportaloanshark@stoploansharks.gov.uk or private message on facebook.com/stoploansharksproject