Search

Romford pensioner thwarts police-impersonating conman

12:40 04 September 2014

Scam victim David Wheeler

Scam victim David Wheeler

Archant

Police are warning the elderly to be vigilant after a Romford pensioner thwarted a police-impersonating fraudster from conning him out of his savings.

A man claiming to be a constable from Hammersmith police’s fraud squad telephoned David Wheeler, 79, of Hood Walk, last Tuesday at around 10pm and told him he was a fraud victim.

The police impersonator then tricked the man into handing over his bankcard details and his Pin number for the criminal investigation. He then advised him a courier would collect the card within the hour.

Retired engraver Mr Wheeler said: “I don’t know how I was so stupid but he was just so convincing.

“I’m of the age where I was brought up to trust the police and I fell for it.”

But the victim thought twice and began to feel uneasy that he handed over sensitive information and called his son-in-law who advised him to contact the police urgently.

Fortunately, the man’s quick actions prevent anything being stolen from him as the “courier” did not turn up.

It is possible that the fraudster kept the phone line open and listened into the pensioner’s subsequent calls and called the scam off.

Det Con Lynsey Broom, of Havering’s violent crime unit, is warning vulnerable residents to be wary of such “courier fraud”.

She said: “We are warning residents to be cautious regarding any callers who claim to be police officers - or indeed any other figures of authority. Note that genuine police would not ask for bank details or send a courier to your address to collect a card.

“Police officers who knock on your door would produce ID wallets which carry not only the MPS crest, but also a photo of the officer - and if you have any cause for concern do not allow callers into your home.”

Anyone who may have experienced similar incidents should contact the violent crime unit on 01708 779 246 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Read more:

Havering Police warn: Don’t become a victim of courier fraud

CCTV footage: Three men rob pensioner in Romford

Hornchurch catalytic converter thefts ground Age Concern Havering’s minibuses - again

Latest Romford News Stories

Our reporter Matt Clemenson with Keith Prince and Peter McNaught, Operational Director of the Bakerloo, Central and Victoria Lines on board the first official Night Tube from Kings Cross station.

Last weekend, Reporter Matthew Clemenson joined Havering’s London Assembly member Keith Prince on a tour of the new 24-hour service. Here is his full account.

Rom Valley Way Car Park in Romford

Supermarket chain Morrisons has confirmed that it has sold the car park site opposite Queen’s Hospital to a global real estate company.

Meditation class at the Thames Chase Forest Centre, with John London

“We all have thoughts and worries about yesterday, today and tomorrow.

12:00
Johanna Higgs

After losing one of her twins in the womb, new mum Johanna Higgs said she couldn’t even look at daughter Gemma. Chloe Farand speaks to her about the devastating reality of postpartum psychosis and her recovery

Indie band Walking Method will perform on the Fairkytes Stage at the Havering Show 2016.

Home grown talents who have honed their craft at the Fairkytes Arts Centre are getting ready to hit the Havering Show stage this weekend.

Fire engine at Hornchurch Fire Station

Three men have been convicted for their involvement in the theft of fire-fighting equipment worth over £100,000 from fire stations in the borough and across London.

Yesterday, 14:50
Havering school students receiving their GCSE results. Sanders School students jumping for joy

With minds racing and nerves building, students across the borough returned to their schools yesterday (Thursday) in trepidation.

Yesterday, 13:53
A 93-year-old is re-united with the very crash-tender vehicle he drove at RAF Hornchurch.

A unique ‘living museum’ booth is coming to the one of the borough’s parks giving people the chance to share their memories of the area.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

You could win £15,000 to spend on either their mortgage or a deposit towards the home of their dreams

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a period of time when you simply don’t have to worry about finding the money each month to pay your mortgage? When you don’t have to put money aside from your monthly income, or worry about having to afford other essential outgoings?

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now