Two attempts to defraud people in Bexhill-on-Sea have been stopped by police and alert counter staff who assisted them.
In the first incident on Thursday 8th March a 95-year-old woman asked to withdraw over £5,000 cash from her account at the town’s branch of Lloyds bank, a very uncharacteristic request. The manager kept the intended victim occupied as he was suspicious, while police were called and she was persuaded not to make the transaction.
The second incident that occurred on the same day was a telephone caller – claiming to be a telecoms engineer called Steve Rogers. He attempted to persuade a 77-year-old woman to send £750 via Moneygram to a person in Italy, to help to “catch a criminal”.
Thankfully, once again an alert counter clerk, this time at the Post Office in Devonshire Square, Bexhill, suspected this to be a crime and contacted police. The victim attempted to send the money in a different way, but further steps were taken to prevent the payment going through.
In both these cases the police managed to contact the victim’s families and give them advice on how to avoid fraudulent scams in the future.
Inspector Dan Russell, of the Rother police prevention team, said: “The staff involved are to be congratulated on spotting that things didn’t seem quite right and taking appropriate action.
“Elderly or vulnerable people and their relatives are reminded that they should always treat requests for cash from unknown callers with deep suspicion, however plausible they might seem.”
Further advice on how to be aware of fraudsters can be found at:https://sussex.police.uk/advice/protect-yourself-and-others/fraud/protect-yourself-from-fraud/