Pensioner scammed out of £50,000

Police are appealing for information after a Bosham man in his 90s was scammed out of more than £50,000.

The partially-sighted victim, who lives with his disabled wife in High Street, was called at home on Thursday, February 24, by a man with an Indian accent, who claimed to be from Lloyds bank.

He said there was a problem with the elderly man’s bank card and duped him into giving out his personal identification number.

A ‘courier’ was sent to the victim’s home the following day to collect his bank card.

On Tuesday, March 1 it was discovered more than £50,000 had been taken from his account.

Detective Sergeant Colin O’Hare, from Chichester CID, said: “This was a despicable fraud where a vulnerable and very elderly couple has been targeted and conned out of their savings.

“The people who carried this out were extremely clever and plausible so the victims had no reason to believe that the call was anything other than genuine.

“We are hoping that someone in the High Street/Shore Road area of Bosham may have seen the ‘courier’ who went to the address to exchange bank cards.

“We’re also anxious to hear from anyone who has other information about the fraud, or has been called in similar circumstances.”

At about 9.30am on Friday, February 25 a male ‘courier’ in his late teens went to the victim’s address and handed him an envelope containing a new card, before taking the old one away with him.

The ‘courier’ is described as white, of thin build, about 6ft tall, wearing a fluorescent tabard and holding a clipboard.

He spoke with an English accent. It is not known what vehicle he travelled in.

Shortly after the exchange took place, the victim received a further call from a man who claimed to be from BT.

He said that there were some problems with the phone line, and the victim should switch off his phone or not answer it as checks were being carried out.

It was also discovered the couple’s BT landline had been cancelled.

Sussex Police were immediately notified and are now appealing for any information relating to the scam.

DS O’Hare added: “We are investigating whether this offence is linked to any others and enquiries are on-going to try and identify the offenders.

“Anyone with information is asked to contact Sussex Police on 0845 60 70 999, quoting serial 677 of 1 March, or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.”