Friday, 21 May 2010
Monday 17th May
Another day, another seminar! On Friday I attended a briefing for all local members by the local service managers: i.e. Youth Services, Schools & Families, Transport etc etc in order to be brought up to speed with how the relevant services were performing locally.
One of the more sensational areas was that of Trading Standards. I was reminded of while working years ago with a chap whose secretary had returned home one afternoon to find her driveway covered in tarmac and the 'tarmaccers' agressively demanding money and subsequently frogmarching her to the bank for payment. Needless to say that she had never asked anyone to tarmac the driveway.
These type of sharks still abound. Our trading standards team explained of a particular local bandit who had fleeced £50,000 from a senior resident for a job that should have cost £3,000. They told us that this particular cove had done similar jobs almost to a 'value' of £500,000, but that they had managed to catch him. They also showed us a number of scams and schemes designed to extort money from vulnerable residents - again, mostly senior residents - ranging from simple begging letters all the way through to elaborate bank account scams.
I find this sort of crime particularly heinous. Certainly, it isn't murder, but preying on vulnerable people is among the worst type of cowardice. I'm spreading the word that anyone who gets anything out of the ordinary, whether it be a letter of an unusual plumbing quote etc gets in touch with me.
Remember, if its genuine, people don't mind closer scrutiny.
If you are suspicious, but don't want to make a fuss, give me a ring on the usual numbers
and I shall pass the enquiry on to our Trading Standards Team.