BOGUS workmen conned a 78-year-old Cradley Heath woman out of hundreds of pounds, after claiming to be council staff working at her home.
Police were alerted after the pensioner visited Blackheath housing office to check whether the two men who called at her Prince Street home earlier in the day were genuine.
Staff had to break the news that they were not working on behalf of Sandwell Council and that they were likely to have been con artists out to steal her savings.
Checks confirmed that not only had the men conned the pensioner out of £600, having claimed that they needed payment for gardening work.
They also stole hundreds more when they sneaked inside the property on Tuesday morning as the woman was fetching their ‘fee’ and stole money from a bedroom.
The men, who were wearing dark, dark coloured workmen type trousers, fleece jumpers and boots, left the scene in a black Land Rover. They both spoke with Black Country accents.
Detective Sergeant Mick Perkins said: "This is a despicable crime that has devastated an elderly lady, whose savings have been taken by people who turned up at her home, claiming to be there to help.
"She gave money in good faith but, not content with £600, the heartless thieves also searched her home, taking hundreds more.
"Thankfully she was unharmed but, understandably, she is very shaken and upset by what happened.
"We need to speak to anyone who recognises the descriptions, may have been in the area of Prince Street on Tuesday morning, or who saw a black Land Rover acting suspiciously, to call us."
Witnesses or anyone with information should call the Sandwell and Dudley Acquisitive Crime Team in Force CID at Harborne by dialling 101, or speak to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.