A YOUNG father’s party plans for his son’s first birthday have been left in tatters – after he claimed a pair of online loan firms took cash from his bank account without his knowledge.
Liam Snaith, 20, says he now has just £30 to live on until the New Year after two payments totalling £76 were debited from his NatWest account.
Mr Snaith and his partner were planning to book a venue for little Ryan Fenwick-Snaith’s birthday on December 28, but are now facing up to a tough festive season.
He says he has no idea how and why the cash has been debited from his account – as he has never taken out a loan with either company.
Mr Snaith, from Simonside, South Shields, said: “Two payments – one for £36 and another for £39.99 – have been taken by loan companies, and I’ve now just got £30 in my account.
“I have no idea how this has happened. I haven’t taken out any loans with them. We were going to book a big party for our son’s first birthday and we can’t do that now.
“It might not be a lot of money to some people, but to me it is.
“It makes a big difference.”
The cash blow has also left jobless Mr Snaith struggling to pay for Christmas presents and a bus pass so he can travel to a training course with Nissan in Washington.
He added: “The course runs for another month and I can’t afford to pay for a bus pass now. I don’t want to be on the dole. I want to have a job.
“It has made me feel very angry and down.”
Mr Snaith has been to see his bank, NatWest, in a bid to find out how the cash has been withdrawn from his account.
The bank is making efforts to contact the two companies concerned.
Mr Snaith has himself tried to speak to the firms, but has so far been unable to make contact.
He is hoping that the precious cash will be returned to him soon, though it will be a race against time to save his birthday plans.
NatWest has confirmed it is investigating Mr Snaith’s problem and urged customers who notice unusual activity on their bank account to contact them immediately to help solve what they describe as an “industry-wide” problem.
A NatWest spokesman said: “If customers notice any unusual activity on their accounts they should get in touch with their bank immediately.
“Fraud is an industry-wide issue, and we have teams in place to work with customers to make sure their accounts are safe and secure.
“All instances of fraud are investigated on a case-by-case basis.’