Jail for fake cop fraud gang who targeted Havering OAPs

A callous gang who pretended to be police officers to steal from pensioners - including those from Havering - have been caged for a total of 14 years.

The ten men conned around �120,000 from their elderly victims, Basildon Crown Court heard on Thursday (April 7)

The men would telephone their targets, claiming to be police officers investigating a fraud on their bank accoun, and then turn up at their victim’s address in ‘plain clothes’ to collect their bank card.

Victims would be provided with a fake crime reference number before being asked to place their card in a sealed envelope with the pin number.

Before leaving the men would tell the victim not to speak about the case as it would ‘jeopardise the investigation’.

The gang would then clear out the bank account; one 88-year-old woman had �12,336 stolen.

Detectives appeared on BBC1’s Crimewatch in a bid to trace the men.

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Det Insp Chris Krelle, who led the investigation from Havering, said: “These cowardly offences were being committed against the most frail and vulnerable people in our communities. The successful conclusion of Operation Ferres has seen the dismantling of an organized crime group which have been deemed so serious the majority of those convicted received custodial offences.”

Pensioners in Redbridge, Barking and Dagenham, Newham, Waltham Forest and Enfield, were also targeted in the scam, carried out between October 2008 and April 2009.

The men, aged between 20 and 43, form across east London, were jailed on various fraud counts and sentenced to between 12 months and three years.

Anyone who suspects they have been a victim or this or another fraud should contact police on: 0300 22 33 22