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Tower Bridge Road Scam

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Wednesday 15 January 2020 6.07pm
I'm intrigued if this has happened to anyone else. Perhaps there is already a thread? Or perhaps no one else is as gullible?

A man approached me on Tower Bridge Road and said he recognised me from eating in Tower Tandoori – he apparently worked there. He was pleasant, and I found myself feeling bad for not recognising him. I have eaten there numerous times and the staff are very friendly.

Anyway, he told me he was £40 short and needed to pick up his car from the garage. He said his wife had his wallet, and she would bring it to work for him when he started his shift that evening.

Of course, I was suspicious, but he completely threw me with the Tower Tandoori mention.

Anyway, I eventually agreed and got money from the Bermondsey Square Sainsbury's ATM for him.

He said he would call or text around 7pm to collect the money, and then said he would throw in a free curry for being so kind. I didn't want anything from him, but he insisted.

However, as he walked off (money already was taken) he said see you later at Shahi Tandoori. I haven't been there before, and then I think I knew what had just happened, but didn't want to believe I was so foolish.

So, it's gone past 8pm without a text or call. He's also not responding. I decided to go to Shahi Tandoori and ask for him — they tell me this is a scam that keeps happening and that I had been played.

£40 is not much in the grand scheme of things — but hopefully, he hasn't done anything similar to anyone else, or asked for more.

I'm surprised by myself, mostly. I should have known better.
Wednesday 15 January 2020 8.47pm
I was approached outside Shahi Tandoori on Grange Road on Friday morning. The guy asking for money to unclamp his van, which has fresh food in it and promising a free curry. I didn't recognise him from the Shahi and when I told him I was going to phone the police he ran off.

The scammer was middle aged, middle eastern / asian, dark rimmed glasses and a black (?leather) jacket.

I see a thread from a few years back describing exactly the same scam. Hope everyone is on alert and he doesn't take advantage of everyones kindness.
Thursday 16 January 2020 1.01pm
I'm afraid that variations on these kinds of scams (short cons) have been played since time immemorial. London, esp. in the centre, is prime hunting territory.

There's always some story to get you emotionally involved, an urgent need for cash, & no way of them contacting anyone else.

...and they wonder why city dwellers are so cynical and uncaring!
Thursday 23 January 2020 2.24pm
He's regularly active in Weston Street, Snowsfields and Long Lane too. He got me on the way home after a funeral so I was a bit occupied/slow to see it coming. Fortunately/unfortunately it was a pay bar at the Funeral so I didn't have much to hand over. Undeterred, he begged me to use the Sainsbury's ATM on Long Lane to get the full £40, but I brushed him off. He also claimed to recognise me from Curry Express in Weston Street (I have never been) as he worked there. He told me I could drop by and collect my £5 the following day. I tried twice but nobody was ever in.

Next time he greeted me with the same patter (clamped van full of food and an anxious pregnant wife at home) but this time claiming he knew me from Cafe Navaz. That was at the corner of Weston Street and St Thomas Street and I shamed in front of dozens of commuters until he ran away. A week later I saw a member of Cafe Navaz staff and told him, he knew of this scam as people have been going there asking for their money back!
Friday 24 January 2020 11.27pm
In situations like this it’s easy to feel like a bit of a wally- however I think you should be proud of the goodwill/ kindness you showed.

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