Fraudster tricks Hailsham man out of hundreds

Police news.
Police news.

Police are seeking a fraudster who pressured an elderly man in Hailsham into handing over hundreds of pounds.

At around 11am on Monday (24 August), a man called at a house in Derwent Close, Hailsham and told the elderly owner that he had trimmed the hedge backing onto the property and asked for £400.

The home owner, 87, had not asked for the work to be done, but was persuaded by the man, who said he had also done similar work for neighbours and they had already paid him.

The home owner went to his bank and withdrew the cash. When he handed it over, the man said it was not enough and demanded another £800. He said he would return for it later, but did not do so.

The offender is described as white and in his 30s.

Police Community Support Officer Jon Taylor said, “This sort of crime is extremely callous as it targets the most vulnerable and elderly in our communities.

“Police advice is never, ever agree to works or services offered by doorstep callers who arrive unannounced.

“In this case, the man claimed he had completed work that had not been asked for, and this was itself a lie as no hedge-cutting had taken place.

“We would ask relatives, friends and neighbours of vulnerable or elderly people to keep an eye on them to ensure that they do not fall victim to criminals, and to report any suspicious behaviour immediately.”

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to email or call 101, quoting serial 0719 of 24/08.

Alternatively you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers without having to leave their name on 0800 555 111.

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