A TRULY "unscrupulous scammer" who preyed on elderly people in Sauchie has been jailed.

Sandra McPhee was supposed to be carrying out gardening work, but was, in fact, a con artist who fleeced vulnerable people in their 80s.

The 41-year-old appeared at Alloa Sheriff Court on Thursday, August 5, for sentencing

She admitted that on June 22 last year, at Main Street, Sauchie, whilst acting as a trader, she failed to give a customer notice of her right to cancel a contract.

She also admitted that on July 13 last year at Main Street, Sauchie, she pretended to a man, then aged 88, that materials for work to his garden to the value of £2000 were required, the truth being that price was excessive and she obtained £2000 by fraud via cheque.

Fiscal depute Amy Sneddon said the work carried out was only estimated to be worth £650.

Defence solicitor Sandy Morrison said his client's position was that this was a "short-lived venture" which she had "only taken up in the middle of last year".

He also claimed McPhee was "previously of good character".

However, the unimpressed Sheriff Craig Harris handed McPhee a custodial sentence of 110 days.

He said McPhee, of Birkhill Holdings, Clackmannan, was the type of person people with elderly relatives feared.

The sheriff described her as "an unscrupulous scammer" who preyed on the vulnerable.

He also pointed out that the offending took place during the pandemic when many elderly people were feeling particularly isolated.