Travelling conmen have been put on notice as three states join forces to stop them taking advantage of consumers, with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) last week, Minister for Consumer Affairs Michael O'Brien said.
Last week, the heads of consumer protection agencies from New South Wales, Tasmania and Victoria signed the MoU, and all three State Ministers signed a statement of commitment supporting the MoU.
"Over the past 12 months, 46 reported incidents of travelling conmen in Victoria have been reported right across the state and this MoU puts conmen who think they can rip off people on notice," Mr O'Brien said.
"Cross border co-operation means that conmen will find it difficult to cross into other states to try their luck with their dodgy schemes, disrupting their plans and bringing them to justice quicker.
"Through increased reporting, vigilance and education, the sharing of intelligence with our neighbouring states is critical to shutting down conmen operations.
"I urge anyone who has been approached by travelling conmen to report them so they can be investigated and their operations shut down.
"These unscrupulous operators take advantage of the most vulnerable and do not respect consumers or borders, so I am pleased to be working closely with News South Wales and Tasmania to protect innocent Australians from being duped," Mr O'Brien said.
Since launching the Stop travelling conmen campaign last October, 417 calls have been made to the national hotline, 32 individuals have been prosecuted for more than 100 breaches of various laws and $303,359 in fines and related court costs ordered.
To report a travelling conman, contact the national hotline on 1300 133 408, connect through the Stop travelling conmen Facebook page at www.facebook.com/StopTravellingConMen or log onto the interactive map for reports on travelling conmen at www.stoptravellingconmen.org