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Gloucestershire Business News

Elderly man scammed out of £1,500 in Cheltenham

An elderly man in Cheltenham was scammed out of £1,500 for a 10-minute gardening job by unknown men who demanded he hand over more cash.

Police are issuing a warning to be wary of people offering services door-to-door and unannounced, after the original fee was set at £100 to kill some weeds on a driveway.

The incident happened in Charlton Kings, Cheltenham last Thursday (3 September) after two men approached an elderly resident and offered the work.

When the victim agreed to the job for £100, the men upped the fee to £1,500 and demanded the money, and so he travelled to town and withdrew cash.

He handed it over to the men who sprayed his driveway for 10 minutes and left the area in what is believed to be a white van.

Police are investigating and appealing for anyone with information, dashcam footage or CCTV to come forward. This incident happened around Maple Drive/Willow Road, but the vehicle may have been parked in a nearby road.

Information can be given to police online by completing the update a crime report form on the Constabulary's website by quoting incident 151 of 4 September here: https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/tua/tell-us-about/cor/tell-us-about-existing-case-report/ 

You can also call police on 101, Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via their website crimestoppers-uk.org.

Gloucestershire Constabulary is urging people to make their elderly or vulnerable friends, relatives and neighbours aware of this type of scam and for people to remain cautious and vigilant when people offer services and items for sale door-to-door.

Scams involve fraudsters knocking on your door and unexpectedly offering products or services. They can be convincing, and trick people in to paying for work, which is often overpriced, of a poor quality or is not even carried out.

They may pressure you in to making quick decisions for work which often isn't necessary in the first place.

Remember to take time to consider your options and to not be pressured into making a quick decision. Never pay upfront for goods or services you have not received and question whether they are a legitimate company. Legitimate builders do not call door to door. If you feel pressured by any cold caller, say no and close the door.

For more advice visit: https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/fa/fraud/personal-fraud/door-to-door-courier-fraud/ 

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