An elderly man was tricked into handing over thousands of pounds to a cold caller posing as a gardener.

A 72-year-old man handed over a four-figure sum to a man claiming to be a gardener in Pondfield Lane, Brentwood.

The suspect quoted a significant sum for work he did not finish.

Detectives have released pictures of two men who are wanted for questioning in connection with the incident.

The incident was reported on Monday, June 8 but may have taken place as early as Wednesday, June 3, Essex Police have said.

PC Isabelle Landa-Arrese and PC James Gallifant from the force's Local Policing Team have since been to the victim’s address and completed the work to his front garden.

The victim said: “It was really nice of Isabelle and James, they did a great job washing the block pavement and cutting the grass.

“I was very pleased. I offered them some chocolate biscuits, some tea and even some money to go and get a pint but they just soldiered on and accepted a glass of water.

“I’ve been updated regularly with a phone just yesterday.

“Not many people can say they’ve had their garden tidied by police officers – I was looking at how nice it looks this morning."

The 72-year-old added: “In relation to the incident, I mostly feel like I’ve let myself down by being scammed.

“I feel like a bright man and I didn’t think I’d fall victim of a scam. I just hope these men are found.”

Investigating officer PC Landa-Arrese said: “This was a callous crime by a man who exploited an elderly man’s trust.

“We’re making progress and we’re looking to identify the persons responsible.

“We jet washed and tidied the man's front garden - it was work he had originally paid for.

“We’re not just officers, we’re human beings, and this gentleman was too frail to do the work himself.

“We would urge people to be vigilant, to inform their elderly and vulnerable family and neighbours about this incident, and to report any information to us, no matter how small.”

Anyone with information is asked to call Brentwood police on 101 quoting crime reference 42/82104/20.

You can also report information online by visiting or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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