Appeal for help to catch crooks behind scams

RESIDENTS and businesses in Hastings are once again being asked to hand in scam mail to the library.

For the fifth time, the county council’s Trading Standards team is running its Scamnesty campaign.

In a bid to identify scams and the scammers, it is urging people to take any scam mail that they receive to the library in Claremont anytime this month.

Councillor Carl Maynard, the county’s lead member for economy, transport and environment, said the scam mail issue continues to be of real concern.

He added: “Misleading mailings make false promises of huge bogus lottery wins or other high value prizes, but they always insist on payment to the sender before any winnings can be claimed.

“Targets of these scams – often the elderly or vulnerable - can find themselves on the receiving end of wave after wave of letters, with some being sent up to 600 misleading letters a month from across the world.

“Those that fall victim to the mailings can send off hundreds of pounds a month over many years and despite the riches promised in each letter, they never win a penny.”

Following, last year’s Scamnesty campaign, warrants were executed by the Metropolitan Police at five London ‘virtual office’ addresses and scam mail was intercepted at a large UK mail sorting office in a major crackdown on mail scammers.

“The targets were identified with the assistance of intelligence gained from scam victims in Eastbourne and Hastings.

For further information or advice contact Consumer Direct on 08456 04 05 06.

For more general information about the work of Trading Standards www.eastsussex.gov.uk/consumeradvice.