Elderly couple scammed out of thousands over phone by fraudsters posing as police

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An elderly couple has lost £2,000 of their savings to telephone scam fraudsters.

At around 3pm on Monday (July 13) the elderly couple from Hemel Hempstead were called by a person claiming to be from the Metropolitan Police Service.

They convinced them that their bank account had been compromised and that their money had been counterfeited.

They then persuaded them to withdraw £2,000 from their account.

The pair were convinced that the withdrawn cash would be used as part of an investigation into the fraud and would be tested by police officers to determine its authenticity.

A man later arrived at around 4.30pm to collect the money.

He told the couple that they would get their money returned to them after the investigation had concluded.

Detective Constable Amy Tarver from the Hemel Hempstead Local Crime Unit is investigating.

She said: “As anyone can appreciate, having thousands of pounds of your hard-earned cash stolen has a devastating effect and it is therefore vitally important we keep raising awareness of such scams to prevent anyone else falling victim to these ruthless fraudsters.

“The key message to take away is that if you receive a telephone call you’re not expecting you should be suspicious. Do not be afraid to end the call. The police and banks would NEVER ask you to withdraw money or transfer it from one account to another over the telephone.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary’s advice on unexpected phone calls:

The police and banks would:

> NEVER ask for your bank account details or PIN number over the phone, so do not disclose these to anyone, no matter who they claim to be.

> NEVER ask you to withdraw money and send it to them via a courier, taxi or by any other means.

> NEVER ask you to send your bank cards, or any other personal property, to them via courier, taxi or by any other means.

If you are not happy with a phone call and are suspicious of the conversation you have with the caller then hang up and contact police on 101.

Remember, when reporting a suspicious phone call to police, wait at least five minutes before attempting to make the call or use a mobile or neighbour’s phone to ensure you’re not reconnected to the offender.

There are now phones available that automatically block withheld numbers which are often used by offenders.

For more information about phone scams and how to avoid becoming a victim, visit www.herts.police.uk/PhoneScams