Teenager admits involvement in £24,000 phone fraud in Blackmore


- Credit: Archant

A teenager has admitted being involved in an elaborate fraud in which a couple was tricked into giving away thousands of pounds and a Rolex watch.

The 17-year-old, from Dagenham pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation at Basildon Youth Court on Friday.

He admitted having played a part in a scam that saw over-the-phone fraudsters pose as police to dupe a Blackmore couple out of almost £24,000 – £12,700 in cash and a watch worth £11,250.

The teen acted as a courier to collect the money and watch from the home of the couple – who believed they were helping with a police investigation. He visited their home three times in October, this year, to make collections.

The couple was told by the callers that their bank accounts had been accessed by thieves and they had to withdraw money to be forensically examined.

They were asked to buy the Rolex watch under the pretence of a fake investigation into fraud at a shopping centre.

The 17-year-old has been made subject to a 12-month youth referral order and was ordered to pay £1,500 along with £85 in court costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

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DCI Paul Maleary, who is leading investigations into telephone fraud in Essex, said: “We are pursuing active lines of enquiry in order to locate and prosecute the people who are orchestrating these vile offences.

“This is a heart-breaking crime and victims are handing over life savings.”

He added: “It is important for everyone to remember that police officers or bank officials would never phone you and ask for bank cards, PIN numbers, cash or ask that expensive items are purchased to assist with fraud investigations.”