Man arrested on $140,000 'con' charges after police sting
SIX Sunshine Coast and north Brisbane residents have willingly handed over $140,000 to a complete stranger.
Sunshine Coast detectives nabbed an alleged conman during a police sting outside a Caloundra bank on Friday.
A would-be Beerwah victim tipped off police when he became suspicious of the transaction he was about to make with the man.
Police allege the 40-year-old Sunshine Coast man gathered thousands of dollars over the past five years by enticing his victims with promises of cheap car deals and money-making investment schemes.
Sunshine Coast Criminal Investigation Branch officer-in-charge Daren Edwards said the man had arranged to meet a Beerwah resident at a Caloundra bank to collect an $1800 deposit for a car he claimed he could buy for $28,000.
Police say the alleged fraudster told the Beerwah man he could buy the car through his access to repossessed cars from insurance companies.
"The Beerwah man knew nothing about this man's history," Det Snr Sgt Edwards alleged.
"We looked him up, linked him with the other offences and did surveillance on the Caloundra bank.
"He saw the police and bolted, leaving his parked car."
The charged man would use a range of different names and phone numbers to ensure he could not be tracked by his victims once the deal was sealed, police allege.
Snr Sgt Edwards alleged the man also would entice victims with promises of money-making plans in online businesses, betting and his connections with car auctions and car yards.
The man has been charged with six counts of fraud, one count each of attempted fraud and obstruct police. He has been remanded in custody to appear in Brisbane Magistrates Court on May 21.
Police are issuing a warning to the public and calling for any more victims to come forward. Anyone with information can contact Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000 or http://www.crimestoppers.com.au.