Scam artist conned supermarket staff out of hundreds of pounds

A scam artist has scooped hundreds of pounds in cash after targeting staff at Eastern European supermarkets.

Friday, 1st July 2016, 1:49 pm
Updated Friday, 1st July 2016, 3:51 pm
east european supermarkets scam artist

Three separate incidents occurred on Wednesday, June 22, and saw the man enter the shops and falsely claim to be from Dacorum Borough Council’s licensing department.

He then claimed that the store had unpaid alcohol licence fees before demanding immediate payment.

In one case, staff handed over £200 to the man. The shop owners in the other incidents refused to give any money and the offender left the store empty-handed.

Police believe it was the same offender in all three incidents.

PC Johanna Miles, from the Hemel Hempstead Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “Staff and business-owners throughout the borough need to be aware of this kind of scam. The man has targeted innocent businesses in Hemel making claims that were completely bogus.

“The man seen in the photo is believed to have been in the area at the time of the offences and may have information that is vital to our investigation.

“I am keen to trace this person as soon as possible. If you have any information that could assist our investigation I would urge you to get in touch with police as soon as possible.”

Ross Hill, licensing team leader at Dacorum Borough Council, said: “The man involved in the incident is not believed to have any connection with the council.

“Licensing officers from the council will never request a cash payment to be made to them during a visit to licensed premises. Council officers will also carry and produce a Dacorum ID badge during any visit.”

Anyone who has any information about any of the incidents should contact PC Miles on the Herts Police non-emergency number 101, quoting crime reference D1/16/4610.