POLICE in Harrogate and Wakefield have released CCTV images of three people officers want to trace in connection with the theft of bank cards from supermarket shoppers.
North Yorkshire Police have released an image of a man they want to talk to in connection with the theft of an 82-year-old woman's bank card.
Two men distracted the pensioner and stole her card from her car after watching her entering her PIN number at Waitrose supermarket checkout in Harrogate.
They then attempted to use the card at a number of cash machines in Harrogate.
Officers would like to speak to the man shown in the images and are appealing for him to come forward and to anyone who can help identify him, to contact the police.
West Yorkshire Police say a number of bank cards have been stolen in the past fortnight at Morrisons supermarket in Dewsbury Road, Wakefield; the Asda and Aldi stores in Asdale Road, Durkar, Wakefield; and the Lidl store in Kingsway, Ossett.
It is believed that there are a number of suspects working together to carry out the offences. One suspect watches the victim typing their PIN at the till and then a pair of suspects work together in the car park, or elsewhere outside the store, by one distracting the victim while the other steals the bank card.
The suspects involved in these offences have all been described as being Eastern European and both men and women who are smartly dressed.
As part of their enquiries, detectives have released CCTV images of two people they are trying to identify to speak to in connection with these offences.
Det Cons Nick Horn of Wakefield Police, said: "We have had a number of offences reported to us and are reviewing the similar methods used and similarities in the descriptions of the people involved.
"These individuals are playing on people's helpful nature by stopping them and asking for directions, all the while distracting the victim sufficiently to allow their accomplice to take their bank card unnoticed.
"We would urge members of the public to be cautious and to also make others aware of these offences. You can protect your PIN by covering the display while entering your details and we would suggest putting your wallet or purse out of view when leaving with your shopping.
"If anyone experiences any suspicious behaviour they are urged to report it to store staff immediately so that it can be properly investigated."
Anyone with information about the Harrogate incident is asked to call North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 2 and ask for PC Paul Fricker or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please quote reference number 12150181628 when passing on information.
Anyone with information about the Wakefield incidents is asked to contact West Yorkshire Police on 101.