POLICE are on the hunt for two grinning conmen who plundered the savings of a pensioner after tricking him into handing over his bank cards.
The pair posed as bank staff and conviced the 80-year-old his card needed to be recalled for security resons before tricking him into divulging his PIN number and leaving debit cards in an envelope on the doorstep of his Walsgrave home for a ‘courier’ to collect.
The conmen then headed to a city ATM machine on the evening of March 17 and withdraw £150 from the pensioner’s account – blissfully unaware their actions had been caught on camera.
Investigating officer, PC Stuart Watson, said: “These are cruel men who’ve targeted an elderly man and panicked him with scare stories of a security recall of bank cards − the man has fallen for their lies and they’ve helped themselves to his account.
“However, they didn’t bank on the ATM being fitted with a hidden camera and we’ve managed to secure clear footage of the thieves.
“These are men who thought nothing of conning a vulnerable old man and stealing from him – they don’t deserve protecting so if anyone recognises them, or believes they’ve seen them, I’d ask them to get in touch by phoning the 101 number.”
The men are described as being of Asian appearance and in their late 20s or early 30s – one had a full, close-cut beard and was wearing a dark blue duffel coat.
Anyone with information is asked to call West Midlands Police on 101, speak to PC Watson in the Acquisitive Crime Team at Willenhall police station in Coventry, or call the charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.
The incident comes just days after West Midlands Police renewed its crime prevention awareness push – urging people to be vigilant against phone scammers posing as police officers or bank staff.
Since March, residents in Birmingham have been collectively duped out of £26,000 by con artists making flase claims of bank accounts being hacked, cards cloned, or counterfeit cash being distributed by banks.
Sergeant Rod Rose from the force’s Economic Crime Unit, said: “Some people fall for the scam because they believe the bogus PC’s story has been verified by a follow-up call to their bank – but because the scammers don’t hang up the victim is unwittingly still speaking to them and not a bank official.
“Our message is simple – police officers or genuine bank officials would never ask you to divulge PIN numbers over the phone or send couriers round to collect cards or cash.
“If you receive a call requesting this then hang up and contact police.”