Hampshire Police Officers currently investigating a series of rogue trader incidents are urging members of the public to look out for their elderly and vulnerable neighbours.
Detectives are linking five incidents that occurred during February and March in the north of the county and in bordering police areas.
During the incidents elderly members of the public were charged excessive amounts of money for roofing work that was often not needed and then driven to the bank to withdraw cash.
The incidents were:
- February 7 – An 80-year-old woman was charged £4900 in Windsor
- February 18 – A couple in their 80s were charged £4700 in Aldershot. Workman were about to drive them to their bank to withdraw a further £5000 when a neighbour intervened.
- February 21 – A 79-year-old woman was charged £5000 in Camberley
- February 21 – A 69-year-old man was quoted £10,000 but paid £4000 in Farnborough
- March 29 – An 84-year-old woman from Basingstoke was driven to the bank to withdraw £4000 but an off duty member of police staff intervened.
Detective Constable Michelle Carrig from Aldershot CID said: “Please remember to ask anyone who knocks on your door for identification and if you are thinking about having any work done follow these tips“:
- Ask friends or relatives to recommend tradesmen
- Ask for a written quote
- Shop around before making a decision
- Don’t pay upfront and pay by cheque or credit card
- Keep an eye out for any elderly relatives or neighbours.
If you have any concerns about rogue traders, please contact your local Safer Neighbourhoods team by calling 101.
Seven people have been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit fraud as part of the investigation into these offences and are currently on bail pending further enquiries.