Warn­ing as rogue traders tar­get schools

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - NEWS - BY KIRSTEN ROBERT­SON

Scam­mers have been swin­dling north- east schools out of hun­dreds of pounds.

They have dressed like coun­cil staff to dupe teach­ers, with Aberdeen­shire Coun­cil is­su­ing a warn­ing in the wake of three in­ci­dents.

In the first, a head teacher was ap­proached by a man dressed like a coun­cil roads em­ployee, who of­fered to mark roads at a “cheap rate”.

The “cheap rate” turned out to be a £400 bill, and the man pro­vided de­tails of a com­pany whose web­site did not ex­ist.

At a sec­ond school, a scam­mer of­fered to paint lines in the

“Check­for iden­ti­fi­ca­tionor cre­den­tials”

school’s build­ing for £5 a me­tre.

Scam­mers were foiled in a third at­tempt at a fur­ther school, as the head teacher was in a meet­ing when work was of­fered.

Lau­rence Find­lay, Aberdeen­shire Coun­cil’s di­rec­tor of ed­u­ca­tion and chil­dren’s ser­vices, said: “I would en­cour­age any res­i­dent or busi­ness who is ap­proached by in­di­vid­u­als of­fer­ing to un­der­take paint­ing work at a re­duced rate to check for iden­ti­fi­ca­tion or cre­den­tials that sug­gest the per­son you are speak­ing to is gen­uine.

“Un­der­take thor­ough re­search, which in­cludes ob­tain­ing mul­ti­ple quotes and seek­ing rec­om­men­da­tions from friends and fam­ily.”

He con­tin­ued: “I would urge any­one who is sus­pi­cious about a trades per­son to re­port it to trad­ing stan­dards and Po­lice Scot­land.

“There are plenty of use­ful hints, tips and in­for­ma­tion on the scams page on the trad­ing stan­dards sec­tion of the Aberdeen­shire Coun­cil web­site.”

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