Two rogue traders who conned an elderly lady in Fulwood out of over £3000 have been arrested

Two rogue traders have been arrested thanks to the bravery of a vulnerable elderly lady in Fulwood after she was targeted for bogus work on her house.

Tuesday, 3rd December 2019, 4:22 pm
Updated Tuesday, 3rd December 2019, 4:31 pm
After being told thatshe would need to get a bank loan for another 2000, the lady contacted Lancashire County Council Trading Standards. (Credit: Lancashire Police)

The men stated that essential work was required on her home and that this would cost £300.

Further work was later identified by the men which resulted in her handing over an extra £3000.

After a minimal amount of work was carried out, the men continued to use intimidation, and told her that she would need to get a bank loan for another £2000.

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The lady contacted Lancashire County Council Trading Standards who alerted Preston Police.

She was given advice and safe guarding measures were put in place.

Due to the swift thinking of the lady, the two offenders, from outside Lancashire, were located, arrested and released under investigation.

Supt Karen Edwards said: "When I heard of this incident I was disgusted and wanted to ensure the lady knew she had the full support of Preston Police and Lancashire County Council Trading Standards Service.

(Credit: Lancashire Police)

"It is important that we work with others to safeguard this vulnerable lady who has shown immense bravery. Also, it was imperative that these offenders were quickly located and arrested and brought to justice.

“The joint police and Trading Standards investigation is ongoing and I’d like to offer crime prevention advice, to prevent other similar instances.”

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"It's tremendous that the police acted so quickly to arrest these rogue traders. Cold callers use every trick in the book to get people to spend too much money on low quality work.

"Once people have agreed to the job these people charge for work that isn't needed, increase costs of the work or use threatening tactics to get people to withdraw more money."

Lancashire County Council advise that you always say no to cold callers, and use services such as the Lancashire Safe Trader scheme to find a reputable trader to carry out the work.

Another incident reported to Trading Standards earlier this week resulted in officers helping an elderly gentleman avoiding paying out £14,000 for unnecessary work.

People can find a reputable trader through the Lancashire County Council's Safe Trader scheme at https://safetrader.org.uk/ or by calling 0303 333 1111.

To report a rogue trader or get consumer advice, contact the county council's trading standards team via the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06.