Planet Radiofreelocalnews

West Mercia Police said the two elderly people were conned out of ?27,000

Two pensioners from Herefordshire have been convinced to buy and hand over Rolex watches by scammers

Author: James ThomasPublished 7th Sep 2023

Criminals have stolen Rolex watches worth ?27,000 after convincing pensioners in Herefordshire to buy them, West Mercia Police has said.

The force said 75-year-old woman was persuaded to purchase a Rolex watch worth ?13,000 on Monday (4 September) after being called by a conman claiming to be from the “London fraud squad”.

He convinced her that her bank card had been used fraudulently and she needed to make a high value purchase to check whether it had been cloned.

The fraudster told her to call 999 to confirm the details to police, except it is believed he stayed on the line so when she picked it up again thinking she had dialled police, she instead spoke to another man pretending to be an officer.

The victim then bought a gold Rolex watch for ?13,000 before meeting the man’s “courier” at Morrisons in Commercial Road, Hereford, at around 4.30pm to hand over the watch.

In June, an 82-year-old woman fell victim to a similar scam from a man claiming he was from ‘New Scotland Yard’ and that her bank card had been cloned.

The same tactic was used by the fraudster – staying on the phone line, pretending to be from her bank this time. She was conned into purchasing a ?14,000 Rolex watch.

The force is now warning people to be on their guard against criminals claiming to be from the police after the two high-value “courier fraud” thefts in Herefordshire.

Detective Sergeant Andrew Curson, of Hereford police, said: “These types of courier fraud can seem convincing but no police officer from any force will ever ask you to make a payment or purchase, withdraw or transfer money or ask for your bank details.

“If anyone does it will be a scam. Put the phone down and call the police or your bank from another landline or mobile to check, not the one you were called on.”

Incidents like these are being tackled as part of Operation Prospero, which directly targets offenders posing as police officers, working in conjunction with Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and cyber-crime reporting centre.

Hear all the latest news from across the West Midlands on the hour, every hour, on 103.1 and 97.2FM (Wolverhampton, Black Country and Shropshire), 96.4FM (Birmingham), 97 and 102.9FM (Coventry and Warwickshire), 97.6FM, 102.8FM and 96.7FM (Herefordshire and Worcestershire), DAB, at, and on the Free Radio app.

 Criminals have stolen Rolex watches worth ?27,000 after convincing pensioners…