OAP’s driven to cashpoint by cold callers

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AN elderly disabled woman feared she had been targeted by con artists after being driven to a cashpoint by a door-to-door salesman.

The vulnerable woman, who uses a wheelchair and has chronic health problems, was targeted by a firm offering to help residents retrieve council tax rebates.

A man and a woman had knocked on her door in Parr last Thursday afternoon (July 25) - and she mistakenly believed they were official council employees.

First, the duo asked her to sign documents so they could proceed with a rebate, then they requested £170 cash up front for their trouble.

When she told the duo she was banned from driving and couldn’t get the cash immediately, the man drove her to the nearest cashpoint to withdraw the money.

As he did, his partner remained at the house with the elderly woman’s husband.

A police spokesman confirmed that officers received a report about an alleged fraud later that evening from one of the elderly woman’s relatives.

However, after the woman was spoken to and the rebate company contacted, it was agreed that she should be refunded as she had been left “unhappy” with the transaction.

No further police action is set to be taken.

A Town Hall spokeswoman subsequently reiterated that all council employees carry an identification card displaying their name and photograph. Any residents approached in this way should ask to see this identification.

It is also highly unusual for staff to call on service users without an appointment.

If you are suspicious, genuine council employees will always happily wait or rearrange the appointment.

Residents are advised to be alert at all times and refuse entry or requests for confidential information unless they are absolutely sure it safe to do so.

To find out more – or to report any suspicious callers - contact the council on 01744 676789.

You can also report an incident to the police by calling 101 or, in an emergency, by dialling 999.