Man swindles money from travelers at airport by falsely claiming he needed cash to take his ill father to a hospital following heart attackBy Alexis Bell 1:53 PM February 5, 2018
A man preyed on travelers in the United Kingdom and told them a false tale about his father having a heart attack and not having enough money to take him to a hospital, according to police.
Manchester police said that the convicted fraudster who duped holidaymakers with claims of ill family members has been jailed.
52-year-old Gary Lyon of Shayfield Drive in Wythenshawe has been sentenced to 1 year and four months in prison at the Manchester Crown Court.
Lyon earlier pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud by false representation.
According to the police investigation, Lyon defrauded people at Manchester Airport by asking for money so that he could visit an ill family member in the hospital.
On one occasion, he preyed on the kind nature of a business traveler by telling him his car had broken down and he needed money to buy fuel to get to his father-in-law to a hospital because he had suffered a heart attack.
Lyon even promised to pay him back, giving him his number to transfer the money, but when the victim called later on, he never answered.
The next day, a 69-year-old woman was picked up at the arrivals hall by her husband, who had recently been discharged from a hospital for respiratory problems.
As they were carrying her suitcases to the car, Lyon approached, noticing that the husband was unwell, and offered to carry the bags.
The woman politely refused and carried on walking to the car but Lyon grabbed the suitcases and took them to the boot of their car.
He then told the couple he wanted a favor from them and spun them a tale that he needed money to get to his father to the hospital who had a heart attack.
Lyon again promised he would pay the money back to them but the woman refused to hand any cash over.
He got aggressive, and despite her efforts to alleviate the situation, he identified a nearby cash machine and marched her over to it.
For fear of her safety, the woman withdrew some money and handed it to Lyon.
As soon as she did this, he ran off saying it wasn’t enough and exclaimed he would get the rest from her husband who was waiting in the car.
She ran after him, concerned for her husband’s safety, but Lyon had beaten her and was forced her husband to give him money.
Startled at how quickly the woman got to the car, he ran off from the scene.
Several years ago, Lyon committed similar offenses, during which he had defrauded people.