Gang Trick 5 Dorset Businesses
8:12am 23rd August 2014
Five local businesses have been scammed out of cash by a gang of hustlers.
The group of three men and one woman used "sleight of hand" techniques to trick them into handing over money.
Londis, the Rock and Fudge Shop, and Tesco Express in Weymouth were duped.
So too were Chickerell Post Office and Bride Valley Motors.
The offenders have been identified as a group of three men and one woman, working together and separately, who use confusion tactics to steal cash from the shops. They enter the shop and ask a member of staff to change £200 worth of £20 notes for £200 in £10 or £5 notes. When they are given the money in the new denomination, they remove some of the notes by sleight of hand then tell the shop staff they have changed their minds and would like the original £200 back. They are given the full amount in £20 notes for the bundle of £10 or £5 notes, not realising some money has been taken out.
Police Constable Julian Dingle, of Weymouth police, said: "Each crime follows the same pattern. Although the individual offenders vary, we believe they are working together.
"After making enquiries, I am now in a position to release a CCTV image of all the suspects.
"I urge anyone who recognises any of the people pictured to come forward.
"Anyone with information regarding this scam or the offenders involved is asked to speak with the police in confidence.
"I urge all shop staff to be vigilant and not to change large amounts of cash into different denominations. Anyone who has concerns about suspicious behaviour should call 101."
No arrests have been made.
Witnesses and anyone with information should call Dorset Police in confidence on 101, quoting crime number C:14:D:31691. Alternatively, call the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where mobile phone tariffs may apply.