Exmouth residents outwit scammers

Exmouth police are warning against giving out personal details after residents in Littleham and Brixington outwitted scammers

Scam artists have been targeting Exmouth residents asking for money in return for non-existent cash benefits and prizes.

Residents in Littleham and Brixington have contacted the Journal to alert others against falling foul of the money-making scams.

Devon and Cornwall police are warning against giving out personal or bank details in a bid to curb con artists.

Pensioner Beryl Leader, of Greenpark Road, Brixington, was almost taken in by a woman, claiming to be from a ‘government agency’, asking for cash in return for preventing scam callers.

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She said the woman caller claimed Mrs Leader’s telephone number could be removed from a list used by bogus callers – if she first paid by debit card.

Refusing the offer, Mrs Leader, 67, admitted the woman had seemed credible.

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She said: “I received a telephone call from a female speaking very good English.

“She spoke fast, but informed me she represented a government agency that had been monitoring my junk phone calls.

“As I was receiving a lot they would take me off a list, to stop them. She knew my name and address. A letter would be sent confirming this.

“She did require �3 and asked for my debit card number, explaining she only required the numbers on the front, not the back security number. I refused.

“I was nearly taken in. That’s how convincing she was. I feel others should be warned.”

Exmouth lifeboat man David Preece, of The Green, Littleham, foiled a bogus caller claiming he was from the Reclaim department of the British government. The foreign-sounding man asked for a total of �360 ‘solicitor fees’ to refund �4,281 from ‘illegal’ bank charges.

Maritime worker, Mr Preece, 32, who had also received a letter from the Netherlands telling him he would receive �15million if he first sent �130, said he was given a code and a number to call, where he was told to buy two Ukash vouchers at �180 each.

Mr Preece said: “Noticing it was a scam, I played along with the caller, giving him incorrect personal details. I rang the number – 01183 282689 - to see what the scammers wanted in return for the �4,281 that they had supposedly reclaimed on my behalf.

“I gave them my claim number and incorrect details again, to be told I could have a bank transfer in just two hours or a cheque the next day delivered by hand - they even gave me the cheque number.”

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