UPDATE: Recent reports suggest the suspected thief, again shown on this awareness raising Twitter account, is moving around quite a bit, with appearances in Leatherhead, Cambridge, Surrey, St.Albans and Cheltenham all confirmed to BikeBiz. Largely the scammer’s target range is £2,000 to £4,000 road rigs. He’s taken a keen interest in the following bikes to date: Trek Madone 4.7 2012 58, Giant Advanced SL 3 Medium, Trek Madone 4.3, Specialized Roubaix.
UPDATE: Both the Metropolitan Police and Herts Police are now involved in the case.
A bogus policeman is reportedly doing the rounds in South London and Surrey, defrauding at least two people of bikes thus far.
Fraudulently seeking test rides using a fake police badge, the suspect may have temporarily succeed in his getaway, however one victim, Surrey’s Ross Cycles, believes it has a crystal clear shot of the alleged thief.
An ex-Madison employee has also fallen victim to the what is believed to be the very same man.
If you’re a trade member with access to the Bikebiz Forum, keep tabs on this story here.
Ross Cycles is contactable on 01883 331 414 if you’ve any further information, otherwise contact police if you spot the alleged thief.
One bike currently missing thanks to PC Plonker is a Giant TCR Advanced SL 3, size M, Frame No.GK1C384 : http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-gb/bik … 308/49800/
Another, taken from Ben Haywards in Cambridge, is a 56cm Trek Madone 5.9 with Ultegra Di2 transmission, frame no WTU248CT059G
BikeBiz forum user Senna3Times said of his experience: "The con artist used this Alias which we now know to match the officer he was impersonating: a Mr David Lanning
"We now know always to ask an officer to recite his/hers ‘personal officer number’ or such like, but for me its chip and pin with full payment therefore verifying the customer is in the shop and they have the funds available to buy on the day. I think I’m also correct in thinking that if a cardholder has been lax with their pin number and it’s fallen into the wrong hands the retailer won’t recieve a chargeback. We should have been more diligent, and certainly are wiser for it.
"For everyone’s sake, and if you have the facilities to do so, please print this man’s face and stick it in staff areas. If he is in your shop, you don’t want him in there for long, but do me a favour and lock him in."