POLICE are appealing for witnesses after an elderly man was conned out of £140 on Monday.

The 83-year-old was walking with his wife in Westgate, Guisborough, Teesside, when they were approached at 10.30am. The man chatted to the couple and convinced them that he knew them. He then asked if the pensioner could help him change some £10 notes into £20 notes.

The pensioner got in his red Ford Fiesta and drove with the man to the Halifax Bank, in Chaloner Street, and withdrew £100. After he handed over the money, along with £40 of his pension, the younger man ran off.

The thief is described as white, 5ft 8in with short dark hair. He was wearing a white hooded top with a black number on the back.

The theft comes after a similar incident in Yarm, Teesside, on Saturday, when a 72-year-old man and his wife were approached while shopping in West Street.

A man aged about 20 asked if they could change two £20 notes and persuaded them to give him some money. He said he would change it at a nearby grocers but failed to return.

The Yarm suspect is white, of medium build, with a round, chubby face and a shaven head. He had a diamond in one of his front teeth and was wearing a white shirt, black trousers and smart shoes.

Police are keeping an open mind as to whether the two cases are linked. Anyone with information is asked to call PC Carl Drinkle on (01642) 302626.