A Beckenham pensioner who gave away his life savings had them returned to him after a quick-thinking policeman thwarted a fraudster.

On May 15, at around 3.25pm, a distressed 68-year-old man walked into the Beckenham police station, saying he had withdrawn £4,000 from his account and handed it to a courier after being told to do so by a 'police officer'.

The victim had received a telephone call from the man, who said he was investigating a fraud and needed him to withdraw his savings from the bank.

He added not to tell the bank staff why he was withdrawing it as they were involved in the fraud.

The victim withdrew the money and was told it was needed as evidence and to package it up and a courier would come and collect it and take it to Scotland Yard.

A minicab arrived and the victim handed the package to the driver.

The victim then became concerned and went to the police station in Beckenham to report his concerns. Police Constable Steve Allen traced the mini cab company and went to their offices.

The dispatcher contacted the driver and had him turn around moments before he reached the destination he had been told to drop the package off in Holborn.

The victim was reunited with his money.

No one has been arrested.

Sergeant Gareth Star, head of the local safer neighbourhoods team, said: "PC Steve Allen provided excellent service to this vulnerable victim of courier fraud, and it is great news that he foiled the fraudster.

"These unscrupulous people target the most vulnerable members of our communities and prey on their trusting nature.

"Please be aware that police officers will never ask anyone for their bank card or their PIN number, or ask them to withdraw money from their bank accounts."