Do you know this man? - Exmouth police appeal
Exmouth police would like to speak to the man caught on these CCTV images after two shops were scammed and left out of pocket.
Officers said Costcutter, Exeter Road, Exmouth, and Spar, in Budleigh Salterton’s High Street, were both left counting the cost of falling victim of a ‘ringing the changes’ scam.
Police said the takings at both stores were last month found to be �100 short after a man asking to exchange bank notes for small change caused confusion among staff with his request.
Officers are warning local businesses a man committing fraudulent transactions has been operating in the area.
PC Sarah Henley, at Exmouth CID, said she was keen to hear from anyone who may know the identity of the man in the CCTV images.
The police believe he could help them with their enquiries.
She said: “This male is yet to be located, so I am hoping that someone may come forward with further information, or similar crimes may become apparent, which may offer some new leads.
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“I also wanted to raise awareness to local businesses about this kind of scam to help them avoid unnecessary losses at what are quite tough times.”
Police said a man told Costcutter staff he was from a local kebab shop and asked them to change �10 and �20 notes.
PC Henley said: “After this has been done, he confused the member of staff by saying that it wasn’t what he wanted. He wanted �1 coins and hands the money back.
“When the transaction cannot be actioned, he leaves the store.
“The till was later found to be �100 down.”
In Budleigh’s Spar shop, a fraudster also asked staff to change �20 and �10 notes.
PC Henley added: “When he is handed the �10s, the CCTV shows the male counting it. He then appears to conceal an unknown amount of the notes in hand before he hands the money back asking for 10 pences.
“When this is declined, he leaves the store. The till was later found to be �100 light.”
If you can help police with information about the crimes, or CCTV images, contact PC Henley on 08452 777444, quoting crime reference KE/11/1531 for the Exmouth offence and KE/11/1536 for the Budleigh fraud.