Scammers pretend to be HMRC officers to target elderly and vulnerable people

Scammers are pretending to be Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs officers in order to try to target elderly and vulnerable people, police have warned.

Wednesday, 25th May 2016, 1:05 pm
Updated Wednesday, 25th May 2016, 2:08 pm
Telephone scam

On Saturday an 80-year-old woman from Long Itchington picked up a message from a man claiming to be from HMRC and asking her to call him back.

When she returned the call she too was told that she owed money for tax and needed to get a solicitor or she could be arrested.

Her son took over the phone call and told the caller to put everything in writing which he said he would do then hung up.

A few days earlier a woman in Wellesbourne had two messages with the same claim, but she phoned the genuine HMRC instead and was reassured that the calls were not from them and it was not the way they would work.

An incident of a similar nature in which an 85-year-old man was targeted but hung up the telephone when he became suspicious, also occurred in Stratford.

Insp Julia Brealey, of the Stratford Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “It is very concerning that elderly and vulnerable people in our community are still being targeted with scams like this”

“The victims in these instances have, at least, realised it is a scam and have not been fooled into handing money over.

“I would urge everyone to be very suspicious of this type of call and make sure that their elderly and vulnerable family, friends and neighbours are aware of this.”

Anyone with information about this type of incident, or is aware of any suspicious activity, is asked to call Warwickshire Police on 101 or contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111 or via the website