Police team to support individuals falling foul to fraud

DI Tom Rowe (L) and Police and Crime commissioner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Darryl Preston

DI Tom Rowe (L) and Police and Crime Commissioner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Darryl Preston are both part of the team supporting individuals in the county who have fallen foul to crime. - Credit: POLICE

A team of police from Cambridgeshire Constabulary are working closely with Action Fraud to support individuals in the county who have fallen foul to the crime. 

Cambridgeshire Constabulary has reported that fraud by con artists, rogue traders and ‘Tinder Swindler’ romance scammers costs residents in Cambridgeshire around £1.5-2 million a month. 

Netflix smash hits such as ‘The Puppet Master’ and ‘Tinder Swindler’ show the devastating effect that fraud can have on victims. 

The popular documentaries also make clear how difficult it can be for police forces to fight fraud, especially when victims are not even aware that they are victims. 

Cambridgeshire Constabulary has established a team which investigates reports of fraud and another team which works to prevent it from happening in the first place. 

DI Tom Rowe (pictured) who heads up Cambridgeshire Constabulary's 'Tinder Swindler' team.

DI Tom Rowe (pictured) who heads up Cambridgeshire Constabulary's 'Tinder Swindler' team. - Credit: POLICE

They work closely with Action Fraud to individually contact each victim of fraud in Cambridgeshire that has been identified, offering support and advice to help them cope in the wake of crime and to protect themselves in the future. 

DI Tom Rowe, who heads up the team, said: “Fraudsters spend long periods of time grooming their victims and tricking them into thinking they are in a relationship before asking for cash.

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“Victims are not only losing life-altering amounts of money but also have to deal with the emotional cost of realising their relationship was all a scam.” 

The team are also working closely with banking groups to identify potential victims and provide swift intervention. 

Banks provide the team with reports when they identify someone making unusual withdrawals of money for the team to follow up on. 

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Darryl Preston

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Darryl Preston (pictured) says the police in the county are working hard to stamp out fraudsters of all kinds. - Credit: POLICE

This work has enabled them to spot and support victims of romance fraud and even young people who are being used as money mules for drug trafficking. 

Darryl Preston, Police and Crime Commissioner for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, said: “In Cambridgeshire, we are working hard to stamp out fraudsters of all kinds. 

“Thanks to the investment made by the public through the policing part of council tax in 2021, this trailblazing team is able to enhance support to people falling foul to this heinous crime.” 

To find out tips for protecting yourself from scammers, visit the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough against scams website

If you have been a victim of fraud, you can report it via Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.