Police appeal over motorway trickster

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POLICE investigating reports of an elaborate fraud along the M4 corridor are keen to hear from people who may have been targeted.

Good samaritans who stopped for a lone man posing as a stranded motorist have fallen victim to the fraud.

The man carries a green fuel can and is believed to stand on various slip roads between junction 19 of the M4 (M32 junction) and junction 15 (A419 Swindon turn off).

Claiming his vehicle has been left stranded elsewhere due to running out of fuel he asks motorists for a lift to the nearest service station, primarily Leigh Delemere or Membury.

En route he claims to take a call from the Highways Agency or police who require his car to be moved at a cost of around £800. Those giving him a lift have then offered to help out towards the cost. Once dropped at the services they never hear from him again. To date it is believed the offender has been able to acquire hundreds of pounds from victims.

Officers are keen to hear from anyone who may have been targeted in similar circumstances or who has any information about these incidents.

A 44-year-old man from Bristol was arrested in connection with these incidents and is currently on police bail pending further inquiries.

People with information are asked to contact DS Chris Feerick on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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