Confidence trickster operating in Shad Thames

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Tuesday 25 January 2011 6.00pm
I want approached by a very smartly dressed man in the summer who asked me for some money as he didn’t have enough money to get back to Tunbridge Wells. The incident happen on the river outside Pont de la Tour on Shad Thames. I was with my son at the time and there was no-one else around. Intimidated, and wanting to get rid of him, I gave him a couple of quid. I was really cross with myself afterwards – and cross with him for asking a woman with a young child for money. I have kept an eye out for him ever since.

My friend told me today that she was approached by a man on Gainsford Street asking for money for a train back to Tunbridge Wells. She gave him some money – a note as she didn’t have any coins. Again, he approached her when it was quiet. We swapped notes and I am positive that it is the same man.

Description as follows:

Age: Late 20s
Height: between 6’ and 6’1”
Appearance: White, slim, blonde hair, very presentable
Clothing: Very smart - suit, blue and white checked shirt, nice shoes
Accent: Essex?

He looks like a City boy or perhaps a car salesman. I’d be interested if anyone else has had the misfortune of speaking to him.
Tuesday 25 January 2011 6.39pm
These scammers will only operate in an area as long as folks give them cash. This fella stopped me on Boss Street - as soon as he started his story I just walked away - simple.
Tuesday 25 January 2011 7.18pm
Sorry to hear you and your friend got caught out, London Aye. I brought this one to the site's attention sometime early last year after I was approached by a smart looking guy outside Waterloo Station. He fits the description you gave perfectly, except he was wearing a black suit. However, with the dosh he's been raking in he probably has a differentt suit for every day of the week. Less than an hour later that day I was approached in the West End by a casually, but smartly dressed and well-built black guy, operating the same scam. Last september I was approached at the entrance to Richmond Station by a less well-presented and younger Asian guy, (late teens.) Seems like the old scam is still going strong.
Tuesday 25 January 2011 9.11pm
I was approached by someone who sounds very like your description near Blackfriars Road on Sunday.

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Tuesday 25 January 2011 11.09pm
Thanks very much for your responses.

Boss Street Bloke - walking away is clearly the right thing to do but when you have a small child to keep an eye on / are unwell and feeling vulnerable / are a woman who is approached by a much taller man when there is no-one else around, logic doesn't play a part in the situation.

Chalkey - I'm sure you're right, people like myself have probably funded a whole wardrobe of Hugo Boss suits! And it's clearly a good scam because it works!

James - Interesting that you think you met him around Blackfriars Road. I'll need to start looking for him further afield.

Is it worth reporting to the police? I think the answer is probably no - but only because I don't think the police would be interested.
Wednesday 26 January 2011 1.58am
I think it would be worth reporting to the police as this man is clearly quite active at the moment - perhaps to the Riverside Safer Neighbourhoods Team? Phone 020 8721 2440.
Wednesday 26 January 2011 9.21am
when approached by these types asking for a pound or some change to help them get home after they have lost there ticket/wallet/travel card etc etc i just point them in the direction of the nearest police station and enlighten them that if they speak to the police station , they will issue them with a travel warrant to get home


they lose interest and shuffle off looking very sheepish ;)
Friday 28 January 2011 12.28pm
I was definitely approached by the same guy quite a while back, just by the entrance to the park that is next to the Snowsfields car park, on Kipling St. I agree I should have reported him to the police. At the time, I don't quite know why, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt (only the loss of a few pennies, thankfully) but I have wondered why I did. As I'm around there quite a bit, I've often thought that I might see him again, but it is thanks to these messages I now know for sure it was a scam.
Friday 28 January 2011 10.11pm
ninja999 wrote:
when approached by these types asking for a pound or some change to help them get home after they have lost there ticket/wallet/travel card etc etc i just point them in the direction of the nearest police station and enlighten them that if they speak to the police station , they will issue them with a travel warrant to get home

they lose interest and shuffle off looking very sheepish ;)

Great advise!!
Saturday 29 January 2011 3.58pm
ninja999 wrote:
when approached by these types asking for a pound or some change to help them get home after they have lost there ticket/wallet/travel card etc etc i just point them in the direction of the nearest police station and enlighten them that if they speak to the police station , they will issue them with a travel warrant to get home

I've never heard of that. Do you have to report the loss as a crime?
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