FRAUDSTERS pretending to be from Cheshire Police are calling victims demanding thousands of pounds to 'clear their name' from potential charges.

The calls use a spoofed phone number which is associated with the force, and the scammers then tell their victims they are an officer and they must hand over the money to avoid being arrested or charged.

In some cases, the fraudsters have even asked for gift cards to be purchased.

Det Sgt Chris Jacques, of Cheshire Police's economic crime unit, said: “Phone numbers can easily be manipulated and this is how the scammers can often catch us off guard.

“Fraudsters will come across as extremely convincing and will try their luck in targeting anyone just so they can benefit.

“No police force would call you and ask for money or gift cards in order to ‘clear your name’. If you do receive a phone call such as this, please do not be alarmed.

“Do not provide them with any information, hang up the phone and report it immediately to Cheshire Police via 101 or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.”

Residents are advised:

  • Always take a moment to think before parting with information or money when receiving messages, as only criminals will rush or panic you
  • Organisations such as the police will never use phone calls to tell you about penalty or ever ask for payment
  • Telephone numbers and text messages can easily be spoofed, and you should never trust the number you see on your telephones display
  • If you receive a suspicious cold call, end it immediately.

David Keane, Cheshire's police and crime commissioner, added: “There are a lot of scams out there for various things and it is hard to know who or what to believe.

“These scammers will stop at nothing when trying to take money from the innocent and hard-working residents of Cheshire.

“Please follow the advice and ensure that your elderly and vulnerable relatives or neighbours are aware of this scam so they do not fall foul.”

If you think you have fallen for a scam report it to Cheshire Police on 101.

Alternatively, you can contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or online at