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‘Rogue traders’ flee with cash for work supplies

Police in Lurgan, Co Armagh, are warning householders to be cautious when approached by door to door traders who call at your home to offer services or goods for sale without an appointment.
The warning follows an incident in the Banbridge Road area on Thursday, March 20, where two males, travelling in a white van, called to a house and told the householder that her property required some work. They claimed to know a local businessman and the female resident paid cash up front for the men to obtain supplies. The men carried out a little work and left, saying they would return. The men did not return and their claim of knowing a local business man was false. 
Police are asking everyone to be vigilant and look out for their elderly relatives or neighbours.
If you do have work that you need carried out at your home it  is recommended that you get quotes from reputable companies.
Allowing a rogue trader into your home or garden also carries the risk of allowing a stranger, with no verifiable identification, recommendation or company  background, onto your premises where they can see your valuables and ways into your home.
There is no foolproof way of recognising rogue workmen however  in the past, many reported incidents have involved callers offering to sell  products, tarmac driveways, gardening work, gutter replacements or power washing  roofs and driveways.
Such ‘traders’ normally do not carry identification, are reluctant to give an estimate in writing and will normally ask for cash, which should set alarm bells ringing straight away.
The ‘Quick Check’  scheme allows householders to check if someone claiming to represent an  organisation is genuine and a genuine caller won’t mind waiting while their  ID is checked.
The following tips may help prevent you becoming the  victim of a rogue trader:
• Keep front and back doors locked. • Fit a  door security chain or similar device (such as a Secure Ring door restrictor)  and use it. • Always ask for an identity card and check it carefully, call  Quick Check to confirm if someone is from the organisation they claim to  represent: 0800 013 22 90. • Don’t sign on the spot if a contract is produced  – take time to think about the transaction – a reputable trader will  understand. • Do not keep large amounts of money in your house. • If a  doorstep seller or trader refuses to leave your premises, close the door and  dial 999. • If in any doubt, keep them out.
Anyone who requires  further crime prevention advice on home security can call their local police  station on 101 and ask for their Crime Prevention  Officer.

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