Conman targeting Hartlepool businesses with ‘change’ fraud

Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

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Police have issued a warning to firms following reports of a fraudster operating in the town.

Cleveland Police are urging businesses in Hartlepool to be cautious after receiving reports of a scam.

Officers have received a number of calls from concerned entrepreneurs over a white male, described as middle-aged, who has targeted businesses in the town.

It is thought that the man is approaching cashiers within local businesses and asking them to exchange money for change.

He then carries out the fraud by confusing the cashier out of more money than what he had originally handed over.

So far a business on Murray Street in the town centre area of Hartlepool, has fallen victim to the conman on June 30.

Two further firms have also been defrauded in Church Square, off Church Street, on July 14.

Police say that the male offender has been successful on each occasion.

A spokeswoman for Cleveland Police issued the warning to be very careful if such a person approaches staff and makes a similar request.

She said: “Police would warn any local businesses to be vigilant and cautious when approached to exchange money and to report any suspicious incidents.”

Anyone with information regarding the identity of the male is asked to contact PC Jon Embleton on the non-emergency number 101.

They can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.