A MAN has been jailed after duping Doncaster pensioners to take money from them.
Ryan Harris, aged 26, of Cedar Road, was sentenced to 12 months in prison at Sheffield Crown Court for fraud after preying on the elderly with fake hard-luck stories.
He was convicted of six offences committed in Balby, Hexthorpe and Intake, in December and January.
He targeted vulnerable residents claiming his elderly grandmother was gravely ill in hospital after suffering a heart attack. He said he urgently needed money to get a taxi to get home to Mexborough.
But as he committed more offences he changed his story to say he lived in Retford, Nottinghamshire, to gain more cash for the fictitious taxi fare.
South Yorkshire Police issued public appeals about these incidents to raise awareness and help prevent further incidents and in a bid to catch Harris as quickly as possible.
He was arrested on Wednesday, January 23, in Balby, soon after police received reports of his last fraud offence. The person who reported the incident recognised the man and his story from the publicity and refused to give Harris any money.
Acting Inspector Paul Dickinson said: “This man preyed on the elderly and appealed to their generosity, by tricking them into thinking he was a young man in need of help.
“In court, Judge Murphy QC said these were abhorrent crimes and he had a public duty to protect the elderly and vulnerable.
“I would like to reassure the public, in particular elderly residents that we take all incidents of this nature very seriously and I would like to thank the public for listening and acting upon the crime prevention advice we issue.”
Anyone with information on these type of offences can South Yorkshire Police on 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.