Warning over fraudster
TRADING Standards officers in Leicester are investigating after a conman forced a pensioner to hand over money in return for house repairs which he never carried out.
Officers have released a CCTV image of the man, calling himself Dave, who approached a pensioner in Fosse Road South on January 25, and followed him home, where he insisted that the pensioner's guttering needed fixing, and offered to do the work for £170.
He later demanded an additional £50 to cover the cost of the repairs and became threatening towards the pensioner. The victim handed over £170 because the bogus workman was so aggressive.
The fraudster said scaffolding would be delivered the following week, but it never was.
A few days later the man did return to the area and tried the same approach on two other people, both of which this time refused to hand over any money.
Both encounters were captured on CCTV which Trading Standards officers are releasing in the hope people may recognise the fraudster.
The man is described as white, wearing a flat cap, in his 50s, with a stocky build, brown hair and wearing black polished shoes.
A white Vauxhall Combo van with the registration number VN06 KNM may also be connected with the incidents.
Leicester assistant city mayor responsible for neighbourhood services, Cllr Sarah Russell, said: "The suspect in these incidents initially appeared to befriend his victims, but later became aggressive and demanded money for work which was never carried out.
"We'd urge anyone who recognises the man to get in touch with us, as we don't want anyone else to be caught out in the same way."
Trading Standards Manager, Ronald Ruddock added: "This is a shockingly brazen incident. We advise people to avoid doing business on their doorstep, and not to get involved if they have any doubts at all."
CCTV images of the suspect are available at the Trading Standards Twitter page, at https://twitter.com/LeicesterCityTS
Anyone with information on these incidents, or has been approached about repairs from someone fitting this description, can contact Trading Standards on 0116 252 6599 or at: firstname.lastname@example.org
For general advice on goods and services, contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Services on 08454 04 05 06.
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