Swiss Made Fake Rolex watch worth £8,500 stolen from Gillingham man in envelope-switch con

The victim of a professional con has warned others to be vigilant after the theft of his £8,500 aaa quality Rolex replica watch.

Paul Reading, 54, of Peverel Green in Gillingham had arranged to sell the gold bezel Rolex Yacht-Master fake watch after advertising it on Gumtree, and hoped the sale would help him and his family through hard times.

But he was left empty handed after a thief posing as a buyer came to his house and tricked him into handing it over for nothing.

Mr Reading said the man had given him an envelope containing the correct amount of cash – which had been placed on a table – but had then distracted him and switched the envelope for one containing lottery tickets.

The thief had then asked to be escorted to the end of the road, saying he was unsure of the area, which gave him time to get away before Mr Reading returned to the house and realised he had been duped.

“I’m more annoyed than anything,” said Mr Reading. “He’s wiped us out. To lose £8,500-£9,000 is enough to make anybody upset.

“I feel like my house has been invaded. They’re professional thieves and conmen. It’s a big loss of money and especially in the climate right now. We’re in a massive pandemic, people are working from home. This was meant to go in the bank to see us through some bad times.”