Northants Trading Standards and Police join forces for Opertion Rogue Trader
|Author: Northants Police||Published: 2nd October 2019 09:27|
Rogue traders and aggressive doorstep sellers were targeted this week by Northamptonshire County Council Trading Standards working in collaboration with Northamptonshire Police as part of Operation Rogue Trader.
Officers from Northamptonshire Trading Standards collaborated on a week of activity with counterparts from Northamptonshire Police to stop rogue business practices and raise awareness of the dangers linked to hiring cold-callers.
Operation Rogue Trader is a region multi-agency campaign coordinated by the Trading Standards East Midlands (TSEM)
Operation Rogue Trader began specifically to target doorstep crimes, especially distraction burglaries and rogue trader offences. As rogue trading practices diversified, Operation Rogue Trader grew to allow participating authorities to proactively target criminal behaviour, and raise awareness amongst the most vulnerable groups.
Special Sergeant Stephen Coleman headed up the Northamptonshire Police involvement in Operation Rogue Trader on behalf of the Safer Roads Team.
He said: “Operation Rogue Trader catches offenders and disrupts criminal activity. Rogue traders tend to be involved in a number of illegal activities and working with multiple agencies means we can seriously obstruct criminals and get them off the streets.
“During the course of the operation we stopped and checked many vehicles, with numerous motoring offences identified, including one vehicle seized for having no tax or insurance. It was also great to use this opportunity to engage with members of the public and explain more about what we were doing and why, and demonstrating how this kind of partnership working helps to reduce crime and keep people safe.”
Cllr Jason Smithers, county council cabinet member for highways and place, said: “Rogue traders and doorstep fraudsters’ prey on the most vulnerable in society. Working closely with the police and other agencies means we can intervene sooner and safeguard potential victims.”
“This campaign is a core part of a wider strategy to ensure trading standards and the police can work together so there’s no place for these kinds of criminals to hide.”
“It’s crucial to raise awareness of doorstep crime and help prevent innocent people from falling victim to these criminals. This campaign provides a platform to educate people and put a stop to doorstep crime in our communities.”
Activities during the week of action included, identifying vehicles used by criminals through automatic number plate recognition (ANPR), conducting intelligence-led patrols, and educating members of the public and frequently-targeted groups before they can be scammed. A number of previous victims of scams were also visited and given advice on how to protect themselves.
If you suspect someone of being a rogue trader, or find yourself accosted by uninvited doorstep sellers, contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 040506.