'Nasty' fraudsters conned over £40,000 out of Warwickshire residents in the past year - The Rugby Observer

'Nasty' fraudsters conned over £40,000 out of Warwickshire residents in the past year

Rugby Editorial 1st Jun, 2024   0

‘NASTY’ courier fraudsters have conned over £40,000 out of vulnerable Warwickshire residents over the past year.

Residents are being urged to be vigilant after police revealed there were 16 reports made in the county, with an average loss of over £2,600 per victim.

People in their 80s are most likely to be targeted by courier fraudsters – criminals who pretend to be police officers or bank officials and dupe people into handing over money, valuables or bank cards, which are collected from them by couriers.

The con-artists use a variety of different tactics, often claiming that there is a problem with a bank account.

Victims may also be fooled into handing over bank cards or high-value items such as jewellery, watches and gold.

Det Sgt Paul Hainsworth from the Warwickshire Police Economic Crime Team said: “These kinds of criminals prey on some of the most vulnerable members of our community.

“If you have elderly friends, relatives or neighbours, please talk to them about the dangers of courier fraud and urge them to be vigilant.

“The police or your bank will never call asking you to transfer or withdraw money. They will never send someone round to collect cash or cards form you.

“If in doubt, hang up and use a different phone to call us on 101. Remember criminals can keep the line open so it is important to use a different phone.”

Det Sgt Victoria O’Keefe from the Lead Force Operations Room at the City of London Police said: “This is a particularly nasty crime, often resulting in significant psychological harm and financial loss to victims, many of whom are living alone and suffering age-related illness.

“Many elderly people rely on their landline phone to stay connected to the outside world and for peace of mind. We would recommend protecting loved ones from fraudulent calls by getting a call blocking device fitted.

“If you hear that your friend or loved one is being contacted out of the blue by the police or the bank and asked to withdraw money, handover bank cards or make purchases, report it to the police immediately. “

Visit www.truecall.co.uk for more information about call blockers.

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