Warning Issued Following Reports of Fraudulent Salesmen Targeting Elderly People in Thornaby and Middlesbrough

Police are warning members of the public after a number of reports of a fraudulent door to door salesman targeting elderly people in Thornaby and Middlesbrough.

There have been seven incidents reported between Thursday 19th May and Tuesday 7th June.

The salesman reportedly attended homes claiming to be opening a jewellery shop and asking the victims if they wished to sell any jewellery.

During one of the incidents, which happened on the afternoon of Tuesday 7th June in Hemlington, Middlesbrough, a ‘salesman’ approached a 73-year-old woman’s house and asked if she wanted to sell any jewellery. The victim allowed the alleged salesman into her home. He then searched through her jewellery but left empty handed.

In two other incidents police believe that the same man stole a gold coloured ring with a green emerald stone and a pink pendant which was on a gold chain, a gold ring with an opal stone and a gold ring from properties in Middlesbrough.

Officers are linking the incidents at this time. The suspect is described as a white male, around 6 ft tall, of thin build, with black hair which was greying. During the incident on Tuesday 7th June he was wearing dark trousers and a light coloured shirt.

In order to trade door to door, salespeople should have a current pedlars certificate and identification.

DC Joanne Williams said: “It is important not to let anyone that you don’t know into your home without verifying who they are by asking to see identification and asking salespeople for a current pedlars certificate. If you feel it necessary, call the company that they claim to be working for to make sure that you’re happy that they are who they say they are. If you’re unsure or worried then don’t let them in and call police on 101 or in an emergency ring 999.”

Anyone who thinks that they have been a victim or anyone with information regarding the incidents is asked to contact DC Joanne Williams on the non-emergency number 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org.