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1 February 2014, 06:19
A number of people in Eastleigh have been targetted by a scam and conned out of several thousand pounds.
Hampshire Police are investigating six reports over the last two days. (Thursday 30 January and Friday 31 January 2014).
Victims have received a phone call from a man who has told them he is from Hammersmith Police. The man sounds very plausible but no-one should engage in conversation with him. Police want to hear from anyone else that has received such a call and to warn the public not to give out bank details or to pass any valuables to couriers following calls of this nature. Further advice to follow at the end of the message.
A 73-year-old man received a phone call from a man purporting to be from Hammersmith Police and that they had arrested someone who had some jewellery. He said that a courier would be round to collect the family jewellery for fingerprints and also for money which would be reimbursed. A taxi company collected the items and deliver it to them to an address in London.
An 83-year-old woman received a phone call from a man purporting to be from Hammersmith Police. He said that there had been fraudulent activity on her bank account and someone had been arrested. She was told that her bank was under surveillance by police and she should withdraw money and a courier would pick it up to check the notes. The victim did this and a local taxi was used to courier the money to London. The victim was then called again and was told that it was a scam before the caller hang up.
A 90-year-old woman also received a phone call from a man purporting to be from Hammersmith Police Station. She was asked to call them back on 999. It is suspected the caller kept the line open to trick the victim. She was told the police had two people in police custody for fraud and they had seized 5 gold Rolex watches. Again a local taxi arrived to courier some money which was placed into brown envelopes.
On each occasion several thousand pounds worth of property or cash was taken.
Two other men (both aged 71) and a woman (aged 68) in the Eastleigh area have also received similar calls but have refused to hand over details or property.
Anyone who receives similar calls is asked not to provide any information to the caller and is should contact PS Harry Wilson at Eastleigh police station on 101 or via the website www.hampshire.police.uk/internet/contact/message_officer.htm
You can also call the charity Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where information can be left anonymously. Minicom users should call 01962 875000.
Police are also offering this general information about telephone scams:
- Never accept offers over the phone “if they sound too good to be true, they usually are”.
- Never give personal details over the phone.
- Report any suspicious phone calls to your phone company.
- Consider registering your number with Telephone Preference Service (TPS Online) or 0845 070 0707.
- Most telephone providers will block anonymous callers.
- Never give your credit or bank card PIN over the phone. This information is never requested legitimately by your bank or the police.
- If you think something is wrong, hang up the phone.