Scam warning after laptop switched for potatoesStudent handed over £600 for spuds in laptop bag

11 March 2008

A student bought what he thought was a laptop for £600 but it turned out to be a bag of potatoes, police have warned.

The 27-year-old student, originally from East Africa, was approached by a man who offered to sell him the computer in a car park at the rear of Debenhams in Portsmouth.

The man, aged around 40 to 50, showed the victim a Sony laptop in a carry case in the back of a car and the victim agreed to buy it for £600.

Identical incidents

After handing over the money, the victim was given an identical laptop bag, which he later found out contained only the vegetables.

Hampshire detectives are now hunting a blue Ford Escort estate, registration number M235 GDD, involved in the scam and are linking the con to almost identical incidents in London, Wolverhampton and Wiltshire.

Pc Allison Fraser said: 'I would advise members of the public to refrain from buying high value goods from people out of the back of cars or vans.

'If you do choose to make a purchase, ensure that you have the goods before you hand over any money.'

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