A SCAMMER claiming to be a police detective has been relentlessly targetting residents across North Yorkshire.

Police have issued an urgent warning to people not to be taken in by the fraudster who has already got away with thousands of pounds. There have been 20 reports in the last two weeks alone.

They're reminding people they will never ask to transfer money from accounts or ask people to lie. The scammer has been claiming to be DC Mason Greenwood from West Yorkshire Police, but could use other names, and has used various stories that grandsons or nephews are in custody and have possession of the victims debit or credit cards or there is a fraud investigation ongoing and their money is at risk.

North Yorkshire Police Financial Abuse Safeguarding Officer, Andy Fox said: "We have already issued a number of warnings about this dangerous scam, but residents continue to be targeted and although we all like to think that we won’t fall for it, scammers work very hard to manipulate and build trust. We want to do everything we can to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

"You can always verify the identity of a police officer by asking for their collar number then hanging up and calling 101 from a different phone.We’d urge anyone reading this to please tell as many people you know about this scam, the more people who are aware of it, the less these unscrupulous individuals will succeed in stealing any more money from their victims."