Search

Police investigation launched after five Redbridge families threatened with kidnap

PUBLISHED: 14:15 03 November 2017

Police are warning residents to report any letters they receive. Picture: Archant

Police are warning residents to report any letters they receive. Picture: Archant

Archant

Police are investigating after five Chigwell families have been threatened with kidnap if they do not pay a ransom.

Handwritten letters are being posted via Royal Mail and state that the person receiving the letter or their wider family will be targeted.

A five-figure sum is demanded in order to prevent a “kidnap” from taking place.

The letter also states that this amount will rise to a six-figure sum, should there be a delay in payment.

The correspondences – which Essex Police are calling a scam- were reported by five residents in Chigwell, one in Loughton and another in Buckhurst Hill, between October 15 and October 30.

The letters also give instructions to create a Gumtree post or send a response to a mobile phone number.

Det Con Clive Singer at Loughton CID said he wants to reassure people that these correspondences are part of a scam.

He is warning residents who receive such notes to report them to the police and not handle them too much.

This will enable officers to extract as much DNA or clues from the letter as possible.

“These letters are generic, however, to receive something like this through the post is very unpleasant, and ultimately, the objective is to steal money from innocent people,” he said.

“We want to reassure residents that this is a scam and that there is no cause for concern in relation to the personal safety of residents.

“The letters are not targeted and there is nothing to suggest that the sender has any personal information.

“Rest assured that we are investigating this scam thoroughly, and would ask that if people receive a similar letter, that they avoid handling it to preserve forensic opportunities.”

Royal Mail have been contacted for comment.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Essex Police on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Related articles

Latest Ilford Stories

Yesterday, 17:00

Sporting Bengal United will look to make it five games without defeat when they host the Motormen

Yesterday, 15:35

Anjem Choudary will be subject to a strict supervision regime after his release from prison later this week.

Yesterday, 15:00

Ex-O’s defender Darren Purse will be on the touchline against Leyton Orient’s under-18s in the FA Youth Cup this week

Yesterday, 14:00

The latest news from the Ilford Social Centre Darts League

Yesterday, 13:00

Letters from an aeroplane crash, relics from a national disaster and correspondence between long lost lovers.

Yesterday, 13:00

Linkside Tennis Club held a successful junior finals day despite steady, then torrential rain and a chilly wind on the weekend.

Yesterday, 12:00

A prolific blackmailer from Woodford Green who tried to force the CEO of a well known company to hand over £150,000 has been jailed for more than five years.

Yesterday, 12:00

Redbridge joint-manager Ricky Eaton says it’s great to see his side scoring again after sealing a comfortable 4-1 win against Southend Manor to progress in the FA Vase.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Struggling to find a buyer for your home in a slower market? We speak to Ilford property expert Nina Kaura from Portico about the Crossrail effect and why getting things right first time will get you the best price for your property.

Exchange Ilford is a shopping centre on a mission to make it a more welcoming and accessible place to the people of Redbridge.

An Ilford shoe retailer and podiatry practice is taking the next step with a move to a new shop just a few doors down.

Newsletter Sign Up

Ilford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now