Scammers targeting elderly people for money have been charged.

Eleven people have been charged in connection with a series of fraud offences after victims lost more than £225,000 to this con.

The phone scams targeted victims in Watford, Rickmansworth, Berkhamsted, Bishop’s Stortford and Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire as well as many people in London.

These people have also been linked to similar instances in Surrey, Kent, Bedfordshire, Nottinghamshire, Yorkshire and the Thames Valley area.

The scammers would contact unsuspecting, often elderly, residents, pretending to be the police stating that there had been fraudulent activity on their bank accounts

The callers would then ask victims to withdraw large sums of money from their accounts to be handed over to a courier.

The group scammed victims out of a total of £225,911, with unsuccessful attempts to scam a further £122,445, totalling £338,356.

The investigation into the series is being carried out by a team of detectives from Operation Manhunt, a specialist unit in Hertfordshire Constabulary which investigates distraction burglaries and other crimes which target the elderly and vulnerable.

A series of warrants were issued in November 2016 which led to a number of arrests.

The following people have been charged with conspiracy to defraud and conspiracy to commit robbery:

• Mohamed Abdulahi, aged 21, from Cumberland Market, Camden, London

• Sheikh Hussain, aged 23, from Great Russell Square, Camden, London

• Nahid Uddin, aged 23, from Charlton Street, Camden, London

• Masum Uddin, aged 22, from Orde Hall Street, Camden, London

• Nushad Miah, aged 23, from Harrington Street, Camden, London

• Mohammed Abdul Khaled, aged 23, from Portpool Lane, Bourne Estate, Camden, London

The following people have been charged with conspiracy to defraud:

• Maujasim Rasool, aged 22, from Hayhurst Road, Luton

• Mushahid Miah, aged 23, from Ampthill Square, Camden

• Abdalla Abdalla, aged 26, from Piper Close, Islington, London

• Abdul Khan, aged 25, from Calverton Road, Luton

• Dedar Ali, aged 23, from Cressfield Close, Camden, London

All 11 have been released on bail ahead of a hearing at West Herts Magistrates Court on Tuesday, October 10.

Detective Sergeant Jon Leak, from Operation Manhunt, said: “We will continue to do all we can to track down those suspected of being involved in courier fraud.

“We have done a lot of work to raise awareness of these scams but we need people to continue spreading the word to elderly friends, relatives and neighbours to help prevent more people falling victim to them.

“Please remember that police and banks would never ask for your PIN over the phone and would never ask you to withdraw cash and hand it to a courier.

“If you receive a call you are suspicious of, please hang up and alert the police. Remember to wait at least five minutes, or use a mobile phone to ensure you aren’t reconnected to the offender.”

Anyone who thinks they may have been targeted should report it to police via the non-emergency number 101, and people are encouraged to sign up to the Online Watch Link (OWL) to receive emails about crimes in their area.