Woman conned in shopping scam

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A MUM was conned out of £1,700 after being sent on a fake mystery shopping mission.

The single mum was emailed by a company offering extra cash in return for a review on shopping experiences in Sunderland.

The 28-year-old, who asked not to be named, snapped up the chance to earn a bit of additional money on top of her main job and signed up to the scheme.

She was sent a cheque for £1,700 in the post and told to cash it at her bank, withdraw the cash and deposit it at a bank.

The woman, from Hendon, said she waited for the cash to clear in her account before taking out the money and following the instructions she was given.

But two days later, she received a letter from her bank stating the cheque had bounced and she was £1,700 overdrawn.

She said: “I couldn’t believe it and my heart sank when I read the letter from the bank.

“I knew straight away it was a scam but it seemed so convincing and I’d never heard of one like this before.”

She went to her bank, Natwest, where she was told it was a scam and if she had waited another day to withdraw the money she would have been unable to.

Natwest agreed to loan her £1,700 so she was not in debt to the bank, which she must pay back at £30 a month.

“I know I’ve been a fool to be scammed and I feel humiliated that I fell for it but it was so convincing,” she said.

“Natwest have been great but even so I’m a single mum and can’t afford this.I’ve been left pretty much penniless by this whole thing.

“Everyone I’ve spoken to has said they can’t believe it. I’ve heard of lottery scams but never anything like this.

“I just want to let people know about it so they don’t fall for it like me.”

Northumbria Police said they received a report of fraud on April 26 but Natwest has launched its own investigation.

Twitter: @sunechochief