Crackdown set to target bogus callers

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A POLICE operation is about to be launched in the borough to tackle bogus callers and rogue traders.

Operation Trenchcoat will see officers using a range of techniques, including covert operations, to identify suspected offenders.

Individuals known to the police are being visited by neighbourhood policing team officers in North Tyneside to be warned that a crackdown is under way and made aware of the consequences of committing this type of crime.

Uniformed officers are also carrying out additional foot patrols in areas where distraction offences have previously occurred to reassure the public and to deter people acting suspiciously. Around 6,000 crime prevention leaflets are also being distributed in these areas, providing practical advice on how to avoid becoming a victim of such an offence.

Detective chief inspector Max Black, of North Tyneside police’s area command, said: “Offences of this type, which typically see criminals play on the good nature of residents, are despicable.

“Often the victims are elderly or disabled, and to be a victim of this type of crime causes great distress and harm, not only to the victims but also their families.

“Police, working together with North Tyneside Council and other organisations such as Age UK, will provide practical support and reassurance to North Tyneside residents to prevent them becoming victims.

“We have specialist CID officers with expertise in investigating these type of offences.

“We will always work to bring offenders before the courts to seek justice.”

In October last year, a 23-year-old Whitley Bay man was jailed for four and a half years for distraction burglary, and last month, a 19-year-old Wallsend woman posing as a charity collector, was jailed for 21 weeks for fraud an handling stolen goods.

To report a bogus caller, call the police on 03456 043043 ext 69191.