Police are appealing for information after suspects posing as railway workers distracted an elderly couple and took cash from their home in Hutton. 

A man knocked at their home in Rayleigh Road at around 3.35pm on Wednesday, November 29, and told a woman, aged in their 80s, that he was from Crossrail and needed access to their garden. 

As she went in the garden to get advice, the man entered the home and stole a staff. 

Investigating officer DC Joanna Barnes said: “The suspect was an opportunist who targeted and elderly couple in the hope of distracting them and gaining access to their home. 

“He preyed on their trust, posing as a railway worker who required immediate access to their garden. 

“The victim went into the garden and called a family member for advice, only to walk back into her home to find her possessions stolen. 

“I also want to reassure people that we have had officers making door to door enquiries in the area following this incident.

"These are not bogus callers but genuine officers investigating this case. If you have any concerns please take simple checks to confirm they are genuine by checking their identification.” 

The following safety advice can help protect you against bogus callers: 

* If you receive a phone call asking for your bank details or for large sums of cash call police from a different phone, for example a neighbours, or wait five minutes and be sure you hear a dial tone before dialling; 
* Don’t be frightened to ask for identification and always check it carefully. If you’re not sure, ask them to come back another day; 
* Think about installing a door chain and use it. Keep the door on the chain until you’ve seen identification; 
* If you need your glasses to read the identification, close the door before going to find them. Don’t leave the door open and unattended; 
* Remember to lock the back door before opening the front; 
* Don’t be pressured into letting someone into your home if you have suspicions; 
* Don’t keep large amounts of cash in the house; 
* Don’t believe scare stories. Not all callers are genuine. 

Anyone with information about this incident call Brentwood CID on 101 quoting incident 716 of 29/11 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. 
For more advice on bogus callers visit https://www.essex.police.uk/advice/bogus-callers/.