Fraudsters conned bank out of £45,000 by calling customer services

Fraudsters conned bank out of £45,000 by calling customer services
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Fraudsters conned a bank out of £45,000 by calling customer services thousands of times.

Two fraudsters from Sheffield worked together to scam a bank out of thousands of pounds in compensation. The pair had opened fake accounts and then bombarded the bank with thousands of calls.

Dario Goncalves and Dwight Watkinson had spent three years repeatedly conning Lloyds Bank. They had opened numerous online bank accounts using different names. They then set about ringing the customer services line thousands of times to complain about each account.


Sheffield Crown Court heard how Watkinson had called the bank’s customer services department over 5000 times. Goncalves beat this record and rang the bank over 8000 times.

According to Prosecutor Andrew Bailey, in the period from 2016 to 2020 the pair fraudulently received £44,924 in compensation from the bank.

Reportedly Lloyds bank was not the only bank that Watkinson had been scamming.

The bank uncovered the fraud when it launched an investigation into the number of calls received by the customer services department.

Judge Roger Thomas QC commented: “In a sense, the fraud you were perpetuating time and time and time again was fairly simple and fairly simply executed.

“You had hit upon a scheme whereby you could contact on the phone the Lloyds Banking Group and, having set up false accounts, you were able to make complaints about the banking group and extracted non-existent compensation from them.

“This in the simple form is what this fraud was about.”

The pair had been sentenced to 27 months in prison.

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Alex Glenn is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News. Formerly she worked in the NHS for 15 years until relocating to Spain in 2018. She loves the Spanish lifestyle, language and culture and spent several years learning Spanish before moving to Spain for a better quality of life. She has made her home in the mountains in Almeria, where she loves being part of a rural community that has a mix of both expats and Spanish residents. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, reading and exploring the area where she lives.


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