Suspected fraudsters caught on CCTV leaving fake charity bin

Staff writer

Suspected fraudsters have been caught on CCTV leaving a fake charity clothes collection bin outside a parade of shops.

The green collection bin, displaying a poster that reads: "We love to recycle clothes and shoes", was dropped off outside Cleeve Wood Road shops in Bristol.

CCTV footage shows a white van pulling up opposite the row of shops just after 7.40am, and two men in hi-viz jackets depositing the charity bin, before then driving off.

It is the second such collection bin to have appeared in Bristol with no notice in recent weeks. The charity name on the front of the box, Cheeky Monkey Recycle Co., does not link with any known charity.

The local business owners on Cleeve Wood Road have now attached a sign to the bin left outside their shops with the message 'Please do not use this donation bin as it is believed to be fraudulent'. They have also spread word of the scam bin via Facebook:

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Appearing on BBC Radio Bristol, hair salon owner Mel said: "I think it's an eyesore and I think whoever put it there has a real cheek to put it there without anyone's permission, so I'm guessing it's a scam.It's really annoying thinking people can do whatever they like without asking anybody. So come and take it away, really, please!"

Pharmacist Peter added: "Nobody was contacted about it. We've tried to makes some contact and work out who owns it but it was a dead end. I think it is a con really and it's taking advantage of people who are giving stuff away in good faith and people are making money from it. plus it's taking up a parking space for us when we have limited parking. It's disgraceful."

Florist shop owner Tracey added: "Initially, I thought it was a good idea, until we delved into it and it appears to be not what it's meant to be. It's trying to deceive people with a good nature. I was going to pop some clothes in there."

"There's no trace of where it comes from and things like that don't just appear. They are definitely cheeky monkeys."