Carpet cleaners scam elderly Nanaimo victims

Nanaimo RCMP are investigating a carpet cleaning company used as a guise to steal from its clients.

Nanaimo RCMP are investigating a carpet cleaning company used as a guise to steal from its clients.

Scam artists working under the name Country Carpet Cleaners have hit several Nanaimo residents to bilk cash and valuables from their victims.

Several incidents were reported to police in Nanaimo in July, but similar incidents have occurred in Port Alberni and other Island communities.

The cleaners target seniors residing at retirement homes.

Incidents in Nanaimo happened at a Cameron Island condo, a mature housing complex, and at Longlake Chateau at 3035 Ross Rd.

The incidents each follow the same pattern. Either a phone call is made or the cleaners arrive, gain the victim’s confidence and then ask to clean their carpets. After the carpets were cleaned, small items were reported missing from the units.

At Cameron Island on June 27, Euros and some Canadian currency were taken.

A deaf and blind man, 92, living at Longlake Chateau had his camera and Masonic Lodge medals stolen July 8.

In the same building, a woman, 90, had almost $400 and several collectable quarters taken from her unit.

One theft was possibly thwarted when the homeowner decided to stay in her unit and watch as her carpets were cleaned.

Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman, said no incidents have been reported since early July, but preying on seniors to steal items of sentimental value that cannot be replaced is despicable.

One suspect is believed to be in his 50s, approximately 5’ 7”, chubby with short brown hair and a mustache. He was accompanied by a younger man thought to be in his late teens or early 20s. A female suspect is described as heavy set with long brown hair.

The suspect were possibly driving an older model brown van.

Anyone with information about these crimes is asked to call Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at www.nanaimocrimestoppers.com.