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Home Maidstone News Article
Police have released an image of a couple they want to speak to after a man in his 80s was duped out of thousands of pounds.
The man was approached by a man and a woman at the tills at Morrisons supermarket in Sutton Road, Maidstone, on Saturday, March 8.
They told him he had dropped £10, and then asked him for directions to Maidstone Hospital, as the woman was going to see her mother.
But later he realised his bank cards were missing and more than £11,000 had been spent on one.
Detectives have released this image of a man and woman they would like to speak to in connection with their investigation.
It's the latest in a string of distraction thefts at the store and around the county, which police suspect may be linked.
A man in his 90s also had £500 taken from his account after when a couple offered to help him load shopping into his car in the Morrisons car park in November.
Officers believe the case is linked to three similar incidents across the county in recent months, at Sainsbury’s in Romney Place, Maidstone, and in Dartford and Ashford.
There were also two incidents in May last year at Morrison's when two elderly shoppers were tricked into giving directions to Maidstone Hospital. While they were distracted, their handbags were stolen.
Three months later, another shopper had £1,700 withdrawn from her bank account after it is believed the thief watched her use her card before stopping her and stealing it.
In February, officers released images of three people they were looking for in connection with the case.
DC Claire Beckett said: "There are a number of techniques that people use to distract others; currently the three main methods are telling someone they have dropped money; offering to help put shopping in the boot; and claiming that the victim has a nail stuck in the tyre of their car. I would ask members of the public to be really vigilant to this type of activity, or seeing elderly people being approached in car parks, and to report any suspicious activity to police."
If you can help, call DC Beckett at Maidstone police station on 01622 604336. Alternatively, contact Kent Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111, quoting crime reference SI/YY/1018/14.
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