Five charged over phone scams

Phone scam in Herts
Phone scam in Herts

Three men and two teenage boys are due to appear in court today charged in connection with phone scams.

The five, along with one other, were arrested on Tuesday following a number of warrants in North London.

The warrants, led by the Eastern Region Special Operations Unit’s (ERSOU) phone scam taskforce, targeted those believed to be involved in phone scams in areas including Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Essex, Suffolk and other areas around the country.

ERSOU officers, supported a number of police forces, including Herts Police, executed warrants at a number of addresses.

Two 17 year old boys from north London, who cannot be named for legal reasons, Mohammed Ahmed Miah,18, of Ampton Street, west London, Shamsul Islam, 25, of Collier Street, north London and Dominic DeSouza, 22, of Charlton Place, Islington were arrested.

De Souza and Islam were also charged in relation to offences under the Misuse of Drugs Act.

They are due to appear at Hatfield Remand Court.

The sixth person has been released on bail pending further enquires.

Detective Inspector Danny Lawrence, who leads the ERSOU courier fraud task force, vowed to ‘continue to make the region a hostile place for anyone suspected of being involved in phone scams’.

He said: “The warrants executed on Tuesday are in addition to a long list of arrests and charges that we have made. Our dedicated task force will continue to work hard in gathering evidence, identifying those believed to be involved in scams and making arrests.

“I would urge people to remain aware that phone scams are still operating across the region. As it does tend to be the elderly and vulnerable who are targeted by the offenders, please share the following advice with neighbours and relatives.”

If you are suspicious about a telephone conversation you should end the call and contact police via the non-emergency number, 101. Remember to use a mobile phone or a friend’s phone or wait at least five minutes before calling to ensure you aren’t reconnected to the offender.

Police reminded the public that they or your bank:

• NEVER ask for your bank account details or PIN over the phone.

• NEVER ask you to withdraw money and send it to them.

• NEVER ask you to send them your bank cards or any other personal property.

ERSOU was established in 2010 to deliver an increased response to tackling the threat of organised crime across the six police forces in the Eastern Region of the United Kingdom and to provide specialist covert policing capability to law enforcement.