Warning over Facebook Marketplace 'trap' set by group of robbers on Sheffield street stealing phones

Police have received three separate reports of victims being lured to a property in Burngreave where they are robbed.
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An investigation is underway over a series of robberies in Sheffield where victims are lured to an address in Burngreave and mugged.

Since mid-September, officers have received three separate reports of a 'trap' centering around an address in Ellesmere Road and the supposed sale of a phone through Facebook Marketplace.

Police are warning of a scam where robbers lure victims to an address on Ellesmere Road in Burngreave on the promise of selling them a phone through Facebook Marketplace before mugging them of their valuables.Police are warning of a scam where robbers lure victims to an address on Ellesmere Road in Burngreave on the promise of selling them a phone through Facebook Marketplace before mugging them of their valuables.
Police are warning of a scam where robbers lure victims to an address on Ellesmere Road in Burngreave on the promise of selling them a phone through Facebook Marketplace before mugging them of their valuables.
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In each incident, members of the public have been led to the back of an address on Ellesmere Road, Burngreave, under the premise that they are meeting someone there to collect a phone they have arranged to buy through Facebook Marketplace. However, when they attend the address, there is no phone - instead, the victims are attacked by a group of two or three men, before having their possessions including phones and wallets stolen.

Victims have sustained injuries during the incidents including a broken nose, cuts and bruises.

Officers in Sheffield are now investigating and are encouraging members of the public to be aware of the scam, and also to report any similar incidents or information which may assist inquiries.

PC Andrew Bellamy, from South Yorkshire Police's Neighbourhood Crime Team, said: "We know that incidents like this are really upsetting and scary for victims, and also concerning for local communities.

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"That’s why we’re asking for the public to assist by passing on any information they may have about those involved. Or, if you think you might have been approached by someone on Facebook Marketplace, who has offered to sell you a phone for collection from Ellesmere Road, we’re keen to hear from you.”

You can pass information to police online or by calling 101, quoting investigation number 14/187192/23 when you get in touch.

Alternatively, if you prefer not to give your personal details, you can stay anonymous and pass on what you know by contacting the independent charity Crimestoppers. Call their UK Contact Centre on freephone 0800 555 111 or complete a simple and secure anonymous online form at Crimestoppers-uk.org.