Warning after fake police officers trick £62k from Leicestershire victims

Leicestershire Police is warning the public about a telephone scam involving bogus police officers conning vulnerable people out of thousands of pounds.

The criminals are calling residents, some of whom are elderly and vulnerable, claiming to be police officers. They say that a relative has been arrested and the victim needs to come and pay their bail.

They will then attempt to get the victim to meet them at a cash machine to withdraw their bail money.

This year has seen 62 reported incidents within Leicestershire. Nine of these attempts were successful which resulted in a total financial loss of more than £62k for the victims.

The fraudster’s story can change daily and as well as impersonating police officers, other common organisations they imitate can include, a bank, HMRC and Action Fraud.

Paul Wenlock, Head of the Economic Crime Unit at Leicestershire Police, said: “This kind of crime preys on the best intentions of some of the most vulnerable people.”

“We cannot emphasise enough that the police would never call you to come and pay someone’s bail. Neither would your bank ask for your bank details, nor would HMRC ring asking you for money.”

“If you are unsure about the nature of a phone call, then ‘Take Five’. Call someone that you trust and ask them if they think the call sounds legitimate.”

For further information on telephone fraud and how to help protect yourself, please visit Leicestershire Police, Age UK or the Take Five website.