SCAM ALERT: Rogue traders target elderly in Leyland

An elderly person in Leyland was targeted by rogue traders who used illegal selling techniques to con them out of money, say police.

Police were contacted on Saturday, September 16 following the incident on Sandy Lane where elderly people were approached on the street by traders who pressured a resident into handing cash over upfront in return for landscaping work.

Officers say the work was not completed.

A warning has now been issued by Leyland Police asking residents to look out for their vulnerable neighbours and tradesmen who do not appear reputable,

A spokesman said: “Today we have had reports that an incident took place where we suspect that rogue traders have approached elderly people on the street and used illegal selling methods to obtain money.

“The traders commenced landscaping work and pressured the resident into handing over cash up front, the traders did not supply any of the paperwork they are required to by law to explain the residents consumer rights, the work was not completed.

“We would urge people to speak to their elderly relatives and make them aware of such methods used by criminals, we would also urge residents to take an interest in their neighbours who may be vulnerable and keep an eye out for any tradesman who may not appear reputable."

This matter is being investigated and will be referred to LCC Trading Standards Department.

Police guidance on how to spot a Rogue Trader
• They may tell you the work is urgent and needs to be carried out immediately.
• They will normally ask for payment there and then and may offer to come to the bank with you if you don’t have the cash at hand.

How can I protect myself from doorstep crime?
• Be on guard if someone turns up unexpectedly.
• Keep front and back doors locked.
• Use the door viewer or nearby window when answering the door.
• Fit a door chain or bar – use it and keep it on when talking to callers at the door.
• If you’re not sure, don’t answer the door.
• Don’t feel embarrassed – genuine callers expect you to be careful.
• Only let callers in if they have an appointment and you have confirmed they are genuine.
• Always ask for identification badges of anyone you answer the door to, but don’t rely on them. Identity cards can be faked – phone the company to verify their identity.
• Some companies offer a password system. Ask your utility providers if this can be used and if you have a password with a company make sure the caller uses it.
• Never let people try to persuade you to let them into your home even if they are asking for help – they may not be genuine. If someone is persistent, ask them to call at another time and arrange for a friend or family member to be with you.
• Never agree to pay for goods or give money to strangers who arrive at your door.
• Don’t keep large amounts of money in your home.
• Remember, it’s your home. There’s no reason why anyone should ever enter your home against your wishes.
• If you’re not sure, don’t answer the door.

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