Elderly lose thousands in fake police con

editorial image

Elderly women from Pocklington and Bridlington have been conned out of thousands of pounds by conmen posing as Metropolitan Police officers.

One of them was convinced to transfer £129,000 and the other £77,000 after falling foul of the scam.

In both cases the women were called by someone claiming to be from their bank’s head office, who told them their accounts had been compromised and transferred them to a second man who claimed he was a Superintendent with the Met, who advised them to transfer funds to a secure account, which he provided details for.

In the last month, a 74-year-old woman was targeted twice in two days, transferring £44,000 and then £85,000 to the conmen.

An 83-year-old was also hit twice in two days, handing over £50,000 and then £27,000.

Three others have also received similar calls, but did not transfer any money.

Humberside Police says, if you are called, ensure you:

• Never give away your bank or personal details to strangers

• Don’t hand over money or transfer funds to unknown accounts

• If you have any doubts about a caller, use another phone to ring the police. Don’t use the phone they have called on immediately as the offender may be able to maintain the connection after you have put down the phone.

• Where possible, note down the key details of the call, including the number the caller has run from. Pass this information on to police.

Det Insp Rich Osgerby, who oversees the force’s economic crime unit, said: “These are very unpleasant incidents, targeted at vulnerable victims, where a woman has been scammed out of a large amount of money by highly believable and unscrupulous criminals.

“Officers are working alongside colleagues from Action Fraud to thoroughly investigate the incident and bring those responsible to justice. Our aim now is to spread awareness of the scam to prevent others falling foul of this con.

“Firstly, police would never ask a member of the public to transfer or hand over money. If you are unsure, call your bank or the police – from a different phone – to check whether the call is legitimate.

“Finally, I would urge those with elderly family and friends to speak to them about the scam and how to protect themselves from falling foul of the offenders.”

Anyone with information is asked to call 101, quoting crime number 2152298 or log 165 of November 23. You can also report incidents to Action Fraud.