Stepping up the battle against doorstep crime

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‘If in doubt, keep them out’ ... that’s the message being spread this week as part of a Police Scotland initiative to tackle doorstep crime.

Local community officers have been out and about to help promote ‘Operation Monarda’ which had its official launch in Edinburgh on Monday.

They’ve been giving advice to vulnerable groups in a bid to prevent what is described as a ‘despicable’ crime.

“We are developing the initiative locally by trying to raise as much awareness as possible about rogue traders, cold callers and bogus workmen,” explained PC Stevie Tufft.

“Unfortunately it is often older people who are targeted as they are seen to be the most vulnerable.

“This is a regular occurrence in north east Fife and in a few cases people have lost thousands.

“Bogus callers and rogue traders can be very convincing and win over the confidence of their victims, either to gain entry to their house or to persuade them to hand over money for carrying out work that’s unnecessary.

“Bogus callers will try to gain access by pretending they’re someone they’re not, such as a meter reader, charity collector or even a police officer, while rogue traders usually cold call, claiming to be bona fide tradesmen

“Sadly, the victim often feels so embarrassed about being duped that they won’t go to the police.”