Five men arrested over scam calls purporting to be police officers to steal cash from vulnerable victims in North Yorkshire

Five men have been arrested after allegedly posing as police officers to steal cash, detectives in North Yorkshire have said.

The men, from London, are being questioned over reports of fraudulent phone calls made in attempts to lure dozens of vulnerable victims into withdrawing large sums of cash as they were "under threat".

More than 60 people were reportedly contacted by the males in November last year, with 12 people almost falling victim to the scam. A majority of the reported victims were in Cleveland, with some in North Yorkshire.

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Police said that one victim withdrew £4,000 from her bank after receiving one of the calls, however, did not hand any of the money over.

Five men have been arrested after allegedly posing as police officers to steal cash, detectives have said

The five men, aged between 22 and 44, were arrested following an investigation by the Cleveland Police and the North East Regional Specialist Operations Unit (NERSOU).

Speaking of the arrests, Detective Inspector Jim Forster from Cleveland’s Economic Crime Unit and Cyber Crime Team said: “The arrests are a great example of NERSOU and Cleveland officers working together to tackle individuals suspected of targeting people for money.

“Thankfully, no money was handed over in November last year but this is often not the case. It is easy to fall victim to potential scams over the phone, and particularly if people are reportedly impersonating to be a police officer.

“We want to take this opportunity to make it clear that officers or banks would never ask you to withdraw or transfer cash or give money to a courier to pick up.

“If you receive an unexpected call where someone asks for your bank details or asks you to withdraw cash, then put the phone down. Tell a trusted family member or friend and report the incident to police.

“Impersonating a police officer is a crime and so is attempting to scam people out of money and I would like to thank the officers involved in this investigation for their hard work so far.”

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