Fake lottery ‘win’ letters in Harborough district

The fake 'winning' letter
The fake 'winning' letter

A Market Harborough pensioner has been told she’s won £285,000 on a European version of the People’s Postcode Lottery.

But the bad news is that this competition does not exist - a quick Mail investigation confirmed the letter was a scam.

And now the woman, aged 75, has asked the Mail to warn other people about the letters.

The scammers make money by asking fake “winners” to either pay before they receive their non-existent prize, or tell the scammers personal information like bank details.

“I was almost 100 per cent sure that this letter was fake” said the woman, who asked not to be named.

“My main concern was to warn other people.”

The woman asked the Mail to investigate her letter. We were quickly able to confirm that the letter was fake.

The letter claimed to be from the People’s Postcode Lottery, with a head office in Belgium.

A spokesman for the real People’s Postcode Lottery, which has a base in Edinburgh, said: “Sadly yes we have heard about this scam before. We are working with police to track these conmen down.

“To be clear - you cannot win a lottery you haven’t entered. Also, if you are a winner, People’s Postcode Lottery would never ask for payment to claim a prize.”

Learn more at http://www.postcodelottery.co.uk/AboutUs/FAQ.htm#fraudsters_and_scams

Councillor Joe Orson, Leicestershire County Council’s cabinet member for trading standards, said: “This is typical of the unscrupulous tactics which some individuals employ to try and cheat people out of money.

“It’s also clear from the badly-written letter that the winner hasn’t entered the lottery and no legitimate competition winner would be charged administration fees.”

He urged people to report any similar concerns to the Citizens Advice helpline on 03454 04 05 06.