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Nationwide appeal following Care Home fraud

John Freeman

Officers have issued photographs of two people they want to speak to in connection with bank card fraud following a theft at a Staffordshire care home earlier this year, believing the suspects may be based in another part of the country -  perhaps somewhere in Lancashire.

A handbag was stolen from an office in the care home in Uttoxeter on 21st April 2010 by a man who told staff he was selling products for a book club.

Soon afterwards the handbag’s owner, a 38-year-old woman from Cheadle, was called by someone purporting to be from the HSBC Bank, asking for her PIN number so they could cancel the card.

She gave them the PIN and, a short while later, her card was used to withdraw £300 from HSBC in High Street, Burton-on-Trent.

CCTV stills of a woman and a man who are believed to be involved in the crime have been released by officers. The pair used a pale blue Peugeot Estate which had a black roof.

PC Wendy Roberts, from Uttoxeter Police, said: “This was a particularly calculated crime which caused the victim obvious distress.

“We don’t necessarily believe that the offenders are local and there’s a chance that they may have been involved in similar crimes elsewhere in the country."

• If you recognise either of the suspects, call PC Wendy Roberts on 0300 123 4455 ext 00883 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111