Two arrested following ‘gardener’ con on the elderly

Bedfordshire Police logo

Bedfordshire Police logo - Credit: Archant

FAKE handymen have been conning their way into elderly people’s homes across the area, targeting at least four separate houses in less than one month.

The offenders have been offering to do gardening work for householders in Bedfordshire, before asking for a drink of water.

When the victim goes to fetch the water, the thieves take advantage by picking up purses, wallets, or cash and pocketing them.

One of the incidents happened in Ivel Road, Shefford, last Thursday, and there were a further three in Bedford, Sandy and Kempston.

Following the Shefford theft, a member of the public tipped off the police and two men were arrested afterwards in connection with the incident.

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The men are on bail pending further police enquiries.

DC Lynn Adams, who is investigating, said: “We have arrested two men in connection with the offence at Shefford, but I would still like to warn people that this is quite a common con-trick, along with bogus water board officials or police officers.

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“Similar distraction methods involve strangers knocking at the door saying that their cat, dog or child’s ball has strayed into the householders garden.

“These are all designed to get your attention, so that you do not notice either the caller or an accomplice who is adept at quickly pocketing any valuables you may have in your house. The best thing is to not let them in at all, and call the police if you are concerned.”

Police have not divulged how much has been stolen in total, but have said £500 was taken from one house.

They have also said a red van was spotted at the scene of the crimes, and all the offences took place in the morning.

If you have any information, or if you think you may have been conned, call DC Adams on 01234 275142, or call the 24-hour non-emergency number 101.

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