Scammers continue to trick elderly victims into handing over thousands of pounds in Lancashire

An elderly man was tricked into handing over £7,500 in cash to scammers in the seventh case of courier fraud reported in Lancashire.

Friday, 15th October 2021, 1:43 pm
Updated Friday, 15th October 2021, 1:46 pm

Detectives warned the public to "protect their elderly loved ones" after a man from Caton, Lancaster handed over £7,500 in cash to fraudsters.

The victim, a man in his 80s, was called by scammers who falsely claimed to be from the "fraud squad" on October 7.

The fraudsters claimed they needed money for evidence in their investigation, and instructed the victim to withdraw cash from his bank.

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He was then told to leave the money on his doorstep so it could be collected by a 'courier'.

Several days later, the offender called the victim again to ask him to transfer a large amount of money to another account.

Police said officers were able to stop this transaction from going through.

Det Insp Mark Riley, of Lancashire Police's Economic Crime Unit, said: "These types of crimes are devastating to people's lives and the criminals are ruthless in their attempt to defraud people of their life savings.

Fraud detectives are continuing to warn the public to protect their elderly loved ones after another vulnerable victim reported being scammed as a result of courier fraud.

"In this most recent case the victim sadly did have some money stolen but I am pleased to say we managed to prevent the substantial amount of money from the second attempt from being stolen."

Officers said this was the seventh case of courier fraud that had been reported in Lancashire in the past fortnight.

They have now issued a warning stating they will never ask you to withdraw money, purchase high value items or disclose your financial details.

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"I hope this can be a stark warning to others to speak to a relative or friend if you are being asked to do something like this. It is never going to be a genuine request," Det Insp Mark Riley added.

"Please always check if someone is who they say they are, anyone who is genuine will never mind waiting while you check their information.

"They will never rush you or try to frighten you in any way."

He added: "If you have older relatives, friends or neighbours, please speak to them and remind them to have the confidence to put the phone down and ask for help.

"Criminals are experts at impersonating people and spend hours researching so they can trick you or your loved ones into believing them and doing what they ask.

"But they are not real police officers."

Enquiries are ongoing and anyone with information was asked to contact 101, quoting log number 347 of October 14.

Anyone who believes they have been contacted fraudulently or been a victim of fraud should also call 101 and Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

For more fraud prevention advice visit www.actionfraud.police.uk.

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