Police are investigating an incident where an elderly woman’s card was stolen as she was paying a parking fee.

Hertfordshire Constabulary says the distraction theft in Radlett occurred on Thursday, September 17, at around 11.45am.

The force said the victim was approached by two men as she was paying her car parking fee in Newberries car park, off Watling Street.

The men told her the machine was broken and led her to a different machine in the middle of the car park and said she had to pay by card.

They then took her card without her realising and left in a white vehicle, police said.

Officers are appealing for witnesses and information following the incident.

PC Conor Eggenton, who is investigating, said: “This incident was clearly a targeted attack on a vulnerable, elderly victim. It is disgraceful that there are people out there who will take advantage of others in this nature for their own personal gain. A woman in her 70s has now been left out of pocket, as well as being understandably distressed.

“It was reported by the victim that, shortly after the incident, a man approached her to check if she was ok. We think that man may have some information that could assist our investigation, and would appeal for him to get in contact with us.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to remind people to always be mindful when using cashpoints and parking machines. Make sure you’re aware of anyone who may be around you, as they may be trying to distract you or looking over your shoulder. Remember to always shield your hand when typing your pin number into the keypad, and always check the card insertion point of the machines before using them.

“Most importantly, if you see someone behaving suspiciously around a cashpoint or parking machine, or have reason to believe a it has been tampered with, please report it to us as soon as possible.”

Anyone with information can contact PC Eggenton directly via email at conor.eggenton@herts.pnn.police.uk.

Information can also be reported on 101, quoting reference number 41/74659/20.