Victims conned out of £30,000 by rogue traders in Sheffield

Inspector Chris Lewis
Inspector Chris Lewis
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A crackdown on rogue traders operating in Sheffield was launched following a series of incidents in which victims in Sheffield were conned out of £30,000.

The day of action, involving South Yorkshire Police and Trading Standards Officers, was a 'targeted operation' aimed at rogue traders believed to be responsible for a string of incidents across the city.

Sheffield Council said the operation was organised after elderly and vulnerable residents were 'targeted and conned into paying out thousands of pounds for unnecessary and poor quality building work'.

Police and council officials targeted hotspots across the city, with homes raided, patrols carried out and vehicles checked as part of a national crackdown.

A 16-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of fraud by false representation and trading standards offences related to misleading and aggressive practices.

He was released pending further investigation.

Inspector Chris Lewis, from South Yorkshire Police, said: "Wednesday’s operation was based on intelligence relating to a series of incidents in Sheffield, in which residents have lost more than £30,000 to bogus traders.

“And while this year’s week of action has been successful and well worth doing, I want offenders and potential offenders to know that South Yorkshire Police will target you all year round, as we work with partners to make arrests and recover property."

Ian Ashmore, Head of Environmental Regulation at Sheffield Council, said: “It’s important to us and our partners to contribute to the National Rogue Trader week initiative, although we have a year-round commitment to trying to reduce levels of this sort of crime, protecting the most vulnerable and pursuing those responsible.

“Working together with partners such as South Yorkshire Police and Age UK Sheffield, we are trying to raise awareness of scams and rogue trading among elderly people in the city, who are disproportionately targeted by people who think they can get away with attempting to charge them huge amounts of money for unnecessary and poor quality work.

“But there’s a message to families and communities too. If you know of anyone, particularly the elderly or otherwise vulnerable people, who you think may be a victim of this sort of crime, get in touch with us. As operations such as this prove, we can and do work hard to bring those responsible to account.”