Op Artemis: Four arrested in morning warrants targeting suspected fraudsters
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The men were detained on Wednesday 7 February as part of a day of action pursuing offenders suspected of being involved in fraudulent activity.
After a morning briefing, officers deployed to various areas of Cleveland including Guisborough, Stockton, Norton and Coulby Newham as well as Darlington in County Durham to execute simultaneous warrants.
The activity resulted in a 39-year-old man being arrested at an address on Leafield Road in Darlington on suspicion of fraud by abuse of position.
In Ingleton Road in Stockton a 22-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of money laundering and a 36-year-old man was detained at a property on Blair Close in Norton on suspicion of fraud by false representation.
A 42-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of fraud by abuse of position at an address on Pine Hill in Coulby Newham.
Officers also conducted searches at a property on Lime Road in Guisborough. A 49-year-old woman from the address is still to be interviewed on suspicion of fraud by abuse of position.
The operation was led by Cleveland Police officers from the Economic Crime Unit – supported by the MATRIX team, neighbourhood officers and NEROCU (North East Regional Organised Crime Unit).
It forms part of a National Economic Crime Centre (NECC) month-long initiative to provide funding to allow forces to undertake additional operational activity against fraudsters – codenamed Operation Henhouse III.
T/Detective Inspector Amanda Badger, from Cleveland Police’s Economic Crime Unit, said: “We had some successful arrests during our crack down on those suspected of committing fraudulent activity on members of the community which undermines our economy.
“Fraudsters can deliberately target the elderly, vulnerable people or often be linked to serious and organised crime. The effects of being a victim of fraud can’t be underestimated. The financial loss, the shame and embarrassment of being tricked, as well as the detrimental impact on mental health, can leave long term ramifications.
“If something does not seem right, it probably isn’t, therefore I would urge people to get a second opinion. Please put down the phone if you receive an unusual call, get advice from family or a professional person, and report any incidents to Action Fraud so they can act on it.”
There are several ways members of the public can help to prevent and protect themselves from becoming a victim of fraud including being careful with passwords and personal information.
For more information and advice please visit our website.
If you have been a victim of fraud and want to receive support, please either contact Victim Care Advisory Service (VCAS) or the National Economic Crime Victims Care Unit.