‘Bitumen Bandits’ charged over dodgy roadworks scam

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A gang dubbed the “Bitumen Bandits” may have reached the end of the road.

Three people have been charged after police claimed the group scammed communities in Queensland, and possibly throughout Australia, by doing dodgy roadworks.

“It will be alleged that these three people are part of a group that is being called in the community the Bitumen Bandits,” Detective Inspector Mick Searle told reporters on Friday.

The gang is accused of posing as tradespeople offering to lay bitumen driveways or roadworks at a discounted price.

The group then allegedly demanded payment for incomplete or KetoXplode review poor work, threatening anyone who questioned them.

Police alleged the gang had committed offences in Longreach, Mount Isa and Cooktown, with a church group among the victims.

They travelled to Weipa, the Atherton Tablelands, Port Douglas, Innisfail, Townsville and Cloncurry in recent months.

“They may have travelled wider within Queensland …and may well have travelled elsewhere throughout Australia,” Insp Searle said.

Police could not say how much money had been scammed or how long the gang had been operating.

“Through initial scanning of social media and through talk within the community we believe that it does backdate some time,”  Insp Searle said.

Many victims may not have come forward, he said.

Those charged with fraud are two men aged 34 and 41 and a 16-year-old boy.

All three were refused police bail and will appear in Mareeba Magistrates Court on Monday.

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