Man who used Facebook to hire out a caravan in Skegness that didn't exist is jailed

This post first appeared on Nottingham Post. Read the original article.

A man has been sentenced to sixteen weeks' imprisonment after he rented out a caravan that didn't exist.

Mark Bedder, 31, pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation at Mansfield Magistrates' Court on Thursday (November 30).

Bedder, of Lime Street in Kirkby-in-Ashfield, advertised the fake caravan - which he said was in Skegness - on Facebook.

A woman who saw the advert took up the offer and paid him £100. She then travelled to Skegness with her family only to find that the caravan was not there.

She reported it to Nottinghamshire Police and Bedder was arrested following an investigation.

As well as the prison sentence, he was also ordered to pay the victim £200 compensation.

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NEWS FROM THE COURTS

Detective Constable Richard Cornell of Nottinghamshire Police's fraud team said: "There is a trend in the way criminals are operating, with offenders turning to online fraud because they think it is easier.

"It’s our job to do everything possible to make sure this is not the case. We want to highlight that we have absolutely no tolerance towards people who commit online fraud.

"It can be incredibly distressing for victims who experience this kind of crime. We have a dedicated team who will follow up any report and do everything they can to bring offenders to justice."

He added: "We also work hard to increase awareness of these types of crimes in order to prevent people becoming victims. If you or someone you know might have been targeted in this way, please contact us on 101 or call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

"These fraudsters often aim to target vulnerable, older people so please also speak to your relatives and make sure that they are aware of the signs."