Press Release Issued By
Durham County Council Consumer Services

 

 

 

IT BEGGARS BELIEF

Don’t fall for nurses scam, say consumer chiefs

A plea for money to help two young Ugandan sisters train as midwives has been denounced as a scam by consumer bosses in County Durham.

Durham County Council’s Consumer Services say businesses and the public should be on their guard after one organisation in the County received a hand written letter allegedly from the sisters in Kampala.

The letter, asking for help with study fees, says their father, who had been financing them, died during the year and their mother was too poor to help.

It goes on to ask for financial or material help so that they can finish their midwifery studies and use their future earnings to look after their brothers and sisters who are still in primary school.

It asks for any money to be sent via Western Union in the name of their ‘brother’ Muresige Adolf, and includes a photograph of the sisters, aged 20 and 18.

Inquiries by consumer services officers found that similar letters have been sent to organisations in other parts of the UK.

"The Ugandan Trade Desk at the Department of Trade and Industry has advised that the letter is part of a scam that has been operating on and off over the years but they don’t know who is behind it," said Phillip Holman, the County Council’s Head of Consumer Services.

"This is just another example of the type of scam operating from outside the UK. Anyone who receives such a letter should contact their local Consumer Services or Trading Standards office for advice before sending any money," he said.

County Council Cabinet member, Don Ross, said: "This particular scam operates in such a way that it is easy to see how people could be duped into sending money in response to the plea for assistance."

 

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Note to News Editors: For further information contact Phillip Holman, Head of Consumer Services on 0191 383 3391 or Peter Fleming, divisional manager, on 0191 383 3584.

If you would like to see the photograph of the alleged sisters and the letter please call to make arrangements.