THE 87-year-old victim of a cruel distraction theft has thanked fundraisers who stepped in to pay back his stolen £1,000.
More than 100 kind-hearted people have raised £1,365 for the elderly theft victim.
It comes after the pensioner man withdrew £1,000 from Lloyds bank in High Street, Gosport, but was being watched by a woman.
He was distracted by her and another man outside the bank and his money for Christmas shopping and monthly bills was taken, leaving him with ‘absolutely nothing’.
The victim said: ‘I am staggered by the kindness of people and feel like I am in seventh heaven.
‘I am stunned by the generosity people have shown me and am so very grateful.’
I am stunned by the generosity people have shown me and am so very gratefulVictim
Since police appealed for information yesterday, generous people have raised £1,365.
Kerry Snuggs launched the crowd-funding effort and posted: ‘Wow what an amazing response so far!
‘We are nearly half way there everyone! This is Christmas spirit at it’s very best!’
She added: ‘An elderly gent has recently in Gosport had money stolen from him. £1,000 for bills and Christmas gifts.
‘Let’s restore his faith in humanity and come together to recover this money for him.’
The appeal has since broken its £1,000 target.
Posting on the fundraising page after donating, Michelle Coleborn said: ‘I’m so sorry these scumbags did this too you.
‘I hope my donation and others show you there are more nice people out there than these two low life.’
As reported, when the pensioner left the branch and went outside to South Cross Street he was approached by the woman and another man.
They asked for directions to the hospital and when they left his cash was gone.
He had just taken the cash out to buy Christmas presents and pay monthly bills but has been left with nothing.
Investigating officer, PC Kerri Harris said: ‘This was an absolutely despicable incident where two people have deliberately targeted a vulnerable elderly man.
‘He has visited the bank to withdraw money to pay his monthly bills and to spend on Christmas shopping and now he has been left with absolutely nothing.’
It happened between 10.40am and 11am on Monday in South Cross Street.
The man and woman are described as having foreign accents, possibly European. The victim said the woman spoke better English than the man.
The woman is described as: she had long dark hair with a fringe, of slim build, approximately 5ft 2ins, wearing a white wool hat, light coloured scarf, black coat with fur around the hood, black knee length dress/top, beige UGG style boots with white fur and carrying a black bag with some kind of pattern or glittery sequins on.
The man is described as: about 6ft, wearing a black baseball cap, black jacket, grey scarf, blue skinny jeans and white trainers.
Anyone with information should contact PC Kerri Harris or PC Pamela Collier at Gosport police station on 101.
Donate to the fundraiser here: gofundme.com/elderly-gent-who-had-money-stolen