GLOUCESTERSHIRE police are warning people to beware after an increase in cold calls to people from bogus bailiffs demanding payments for a “phantom” debt.

The fraud involves being cold-called by someone claiming to be a bailiff working on behalf of a court, attempting to recover funds for a non-existent debt.

Fraudsters are requesting payment by bank transfer and if refused they threaten to visit the people’s homes or place work in order to recover the debt that is owed.

A range of different businesses and individuals are being targeted.

If you have been affected by this, or any other type of fraud, report it to to Action Fraud service.