Men jailed for £4k rat con pulled on pensioner
3:05pm Thursday 28th July 2011
CONMEN posing as pest controllers took pet rats to a house to convince the vulnerable occupant his home was infested with vermin.
They had specifically targeted the pensioner, who lived on his own near Fordingbridge.
Prosecutor David Reid said Michael Black told the victim he needed to look around his garden because a rat had been spotted.
He said he would have to put down pellets costing £350, implying if this was not done there might be possible problems with bailiffs or eviction.
“This work would have cost about £37,” said Mr Reid.
Black then took the pensioner to Fordingbridge where the money was withdrawn from two accounts.
Black returned with accomplice Richard Cooper and pretended further work costing £3,000 needed to be carried out.
They took him to Ringwood to get the cash.
A third man, Robert Cooper, was in regular phone contact with them at the time.
On a subsequent visit, Black and Richard Cooper told the man they had found two rats in his house. They killed one, duping the pensioner into handing over £1,000.
A few days later Richard Cooper approached the man in Fordingbridge saying they needed more cash and a figure of £13,000 was mentioned. But the suspicious OAP called in the police and they were
waiting when the trio turned up at his house.
Black, 46, of Gainsborough Close, Salisbury, Robert Cooper, 32, of High Street, Fordingbridge, and Richard Cooper, 20, of Salisbury Road, Odstock, admitted four counts of fraud and one of having
articles in connection with fraud.
“This was a well planned, well organised confidence trick specially targeting an elderly and vulnerable man,” said Judge Gary Burrell QC, jailing Black for three years, Robert Cooper for
three-and-a-half years, and Richard Cooper for two years.
, Winchester says…
3:10pm Thu 28 Jul 11
Utter, utter, scum bags.
Will the victim get his money back? How does it work?
, Bitterne Park says…
3:12pm Thu 28 Jul 11
……………..and if they hadn’t have been so greedy, probably would have got away with it !!!
Moral there somewhere??
3:18pm Thu 28 Jul 11
Well done Gary Burrell QC for giving them the sentence they deserve, although even longer would have been better.
I hope the pensioner got his money back.
Anyone who targets the weak and vulnerable – OAPs, kids, disabled – needs to be dealt with severely, it sickens me that people can stoop so low.
If you want money then get a bloomin job like the rest of us, don’t go about **cking old folk over FFS
, SO16 says…
3:46pm Thu 28 Jul 11
Excellent, now they’re like three caged rats.
, southampton says…
4:08pm Thu 28 Jul 11
Is it just me or does the name Cooper
(and always from the forest area) crop up on here more than any other name? I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, the family breed like rats and it looks like low morale rats at that.
Dave of Dibden
, Dibden says…
4:30pm Thu 28 Jul 11
Cooper , Drodge Wells are all Forest family names,deduce what you will !!
Dave of Dibden
, Southampton says…
4:39pm Thu 28 Jul 11
My god, I’ve heard it all now…. well done to the guy for smelling a ‘rat’ the second time if you’ll excuse the pun! I’m so glad they were caught and I’d also like to hear whether they will be made to repay the £1k they took from him, evil men
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