Police warning after rogue traders target the south of Thames Valley
Thames Valley police is warning residents to remain vigilant and report suspicious incidents after a series of frauds and burglaries across the south of the Force.
The offenders have been targeting homes, claiming to be from a roofing company called Thermal Coatings, telling victims they are there to inspect the work and need access to the loft.
The company is no longer trading however the offenders have continued to target homes claiming to be from Thermal Coatings in Wokingham, Reading, Bracknell, Slough, West Berkshire and South Buckinghamshire with the most recent incidents taking place in Bracknell and Arborfield on June 16.
Detective Sergeant Christina Berenger, leading the investigation, said: “I am requesting anyone who is approached by these offenders or anyone claiming to be from Thermal Coatings to call us on 999.
“Of course they can also claim to be from other companies.
“Anyone who is from a legitimate company will not mind waiting while you call their office. Make sure you contact Trading Standards to verify the legitimacy of the company and they will provide you with the information you require.
“Every single one of these is an offence of fraud and we know of many occasions when people have had the courage to turn the offenders away, so I appeal to anyone who may have been visited recently and been a potential victim of this fraud to contact us on 101.
“With Thermal Coatings now no longer trading, anyone who is claiming to be from the company asking to check recent work will be lying to you and, similarly, they may claim to be from another roofing company, so I urge you to get in touch with us if this happens to you.”
To date there have been 21 incidents:
- 12 in Reading and Wokingham
- 4 in Bracknell
- 3 in West Berkshire
- 1 in Slough
- 1 in South Buckinghamshire
The offenders are described as white men and believed to be aged in their late teens or early twenties.
Residents are urged to verify the identity of strangers who call at their homes, either by asking to see their identity card or by calling the company or organisation they claim to be from and checking with them.
A legitimate caller will never mind and will be happy to wait while you do this. If someone claims to be from the police, this can be verified by asking for their shoulder number and calling the 101 enquiry line to verify this.
Never let someone into your home without doing this.
If you have handed over cash to anyone who has claimed to be carrying out work which was not planned by you contact Det Sgt Berenger on 101 or Trading Standards on 01635 519 930.
If you don’t want to speak directly to the police, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers (opens new window) anonymously on 0800 555 No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.