Three jailed for fraud over bid to plunder account of elderly woman

Rogue traders who tried to plunder the bank account of a 77-year-old woman have been jailed.

Elizabeth McGill, who has since died, was deliberately targeted by a group of workmen from Lancashire who offered to do work on the driveway of her Skipton home in April 2009, Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday.

The court heard how a member of staff at her bank became concerned when she asked to withdraw 1,000.

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Mrs McGill returned the next day for a further 2,000 and when she came asking for another 3,000 she was unable to give any details about the men carrying out the work.

The bank worker persuaded her to contact police and the employee took the registration number of the van used to take Mrs McGill to the bank.

The van was eventually stopped and four men were arrested.

Yesterday three of them, John Lawrence, 31, of Hurtley Street, Burnley; Martin Lawrence, 23, of South Cross Street, Bury; and Anthony Hallick, of Stott Street, Nelson, were jailed after they admitted a charge of fraud.

The court heard that in October last year John Lawrence was jailed for three years for a similar offence involving an elderly man. Yesterday he was sentenced to two years in jail for the offence against Mrs McGill.

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While on bail for the Skipton offence Martin Lawrence stole 100 from the home of a 91-year-old woman while carrying out work at her property. He was sentenced to 12 months for the Skipton fraud with an additional nine months in prison for the theft from the 91-year-old.

Hallick, 33, was jailed for a year for his part in the Skipton offence.