A CRUEL thief who was part of a courier fraud scheme where pensioners were conned of more than £50,000 in just over a week has been jailed.
Rene Cardin collected cash from a number of men and women – aged 68 to 85 – after they had been tricked by scammers in April.
The victims, from across Birmingham, Dudley, Solihull and Wolverhampton, received a phone call claiming to be a police officer who stated counterfeit currency was being used at their local branch and they needed help to investigate.
They were told to withdraw money – under the guise it had to be examined – which was picked up from their homes by Cardin, 23.
She was linked to the crime after CCTV footage showed her car near a victim’s address.
She pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud – linked to six victims – at Birmingham Crown Court.
Two other cases were taken into consideration and Cardin, of Cowles Croft, Birmingham, was jailed for three years on June 9.
DC Edward Spokes, from West Midlands Police economic crime unit, said: “This was an appalling crime spree where vulnerable people were targeted and lost thousands of pounds of money. One woman was tricked into handing over more than £18,000.
“We know Cardin was the courier, rather than the impersonators making the phone calls, but she’s never disclosed who she was working alongside.”
To report an incident call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040, or contact police via Live Chat or by calling 101.
Police say neither they nor a government official would ever ask people to withdraw money for evidence.
A police officer would never ask someone to buy expensive items to clear criminal funds.
They say if someone asks you for your PIN number, other passwords or give your bank card to them through a courier, this is a scam.
If people receive a call asking them to provide large amounts of money and are threatened not tell anyone, this too is a scam.