'Fake cops' pick on tourists in SE1

People impersonating police officers have been stopping and searching tourists in SE1 to steal cash and mobile phones, local safer neighbourhoods teams have warned.

Inspector Richard Barton, who is responsible for local policing in north west Southwark, told Borough, Bankside & Walworth Community Council this week that since 7 March there had been five recorded incidents involving police impersonators.

"People up round the south bank have been stopped and searched by people impersonating police," he said.

"Two arrests have been made and a rather poor forgery of a warrant card recovered.

"If someone does approach you, make sure you know who they are. If they are in plain clothes, get a good look at their warrant card."

Inspector Barton added that there had been similar incidents in Lambeth and Westminster.

Criminals using the same tactics have also been operating in Potters Fields Park near Tower Bridge.

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