Police warn of scam involving Coronation coins after man in Stevenage nearly loses £1,600

Police have issued a warning after an elderly man was almost conned out of £1,600 in a scam involving commemorative Coronation coins. The Royal Mint had launched official coins to celebrate Charles III becoming King on Saturday, but they had sold out on the Mint’s website. Scammers took advantage of the situation by targeting royal enthusiasts. A man from Stevenage was contacted by a cold caller who claimed to be selling the coins. The pensioner handed over his banking details but had been unable to complete the bank transfer from home so went to Stevenage Central Library.

Fortunately, Cyber Protect Officers were at the library conducting a crime prevention session and intervened when they saw what was happening. They advised the royal enthusiast not to transfer the money. Hertfordshire Constabulary said it was a new scam, and warned fraudsters are quick to adapt to new opportunities, like the Coronation. Elaine Crate, Senior Beacon Fraud Hub Manager, said: “It was very fortunate for the poor victim that they had been unable to action the payment and that we were in the library. The victim was taken to their bank by one of our officers, who made sure that no funds had been taken from their account.”

She added: “I would advise anyone receiving an unsolicited call to be very wary and not to give any banking or personal details. Unless they were thoroughly satisfied that the person they are speaking to is genuine.” The police urged people to report any similar incidents to Action Fraud, the national fraud reporting service.

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