Presentation on theme: "Doorstep Crime / Rogue Trader Activity Andrew Bertie Investigations Team Leader Trading Standards Scam Busters Team Wales."— Presentation transcript:
Doorstep Crime / Rogue Trader Activity Andrew Bertie Investigations Team Leader Trading Standards Scam Busters Team Wales
They can be: Uninvited cold callers purporting to carry out home improvement and gardening work Telephone and Internet There is a strong correlation between Distraction Burglars and Bogus Builders/Doorstep Conmen
Work across the whole of Wales Regional representation in each force area Established links with regions in England and Scotland Working with referrals from the 22 Local Authorities in Wales into cross border criminality Vulnerable Interviews
The offenders work as a team of two or more Travel the country choosing areas with a high population of older residents. Choose areas with easy access to main or arterial roads Are taught their craft by their elders often from a very early age Live in a patriarchal hierarchical society Are known to share information about suitable targets and areas.
These offenders know that the notion of carrying out some work is often enough to muddy the waters and confuse attending officers into thinking that the matter is ‘civil’ and doesn’t warrant investigation. But Rogue trader incidents are likely to feature Trading Standards offences as well as Fraud, Criminal Damage, Blackmail, Robbery, Burglary and Kidnapping.
And The majority of doorstep crime victims are elderly (average age 81), living in social isolation. The offenders create fear of the consequences of not having the work done They prey on the loneliness of the victim Often do not give the victim a choice as they just turn up and start work
Statistics from Operation Liberal state that In the two years following a Distraction Burglary the victims are almost 2.5 times more likely to be in residential care or have died. In the three months following the incident 10% of victims have unexplained admissions to hospital. Older victims of distraction burglary decline in health faster than their non-victim peers. 40% of victims reported a change in their quality of life. But most worryingly, almost two thirds (63%) were repeat victims.
To date we have interviewed over 80 vulnerable/intimidated witnesses in their homes. This involves almost £1.4m worth of criminality. Some of these victims have since died. Their evidence is still available for court proceedings
Andrew Bertie Andrew.Bertie@newport.gov.uk Trading Standards – Scam Busters Wales