Two men have been arrested for posing as police officers in order to rob a man they met through internet dating.
The 49-year-old victim, from Darlington, agreed to meet a man after chatting to him on a well-known gay dating website.
When he arrived, two men dressed as police officers said he was being fined and took away his bank card, BBC News reports.
Money was withdrawn and used to buy a mountain bike, cigarettes and alcohol.
The Darlington man then went to police to complain he had been conned out of £200.
A 26-year-old man and a 28-year-old man from the Darlington and Newton Aycliffe areas are on bail. They were questioned on suspicion of blackmail and conspiracy.
Police are now urging for other potential victims to come forward.
The alleged scam is similar to a case in London earlier this year, in which a man was accused of trawling gay chatlines to find men to mug.
Adil Zahid, 27, from Walthamstow, was charged with four counts of robbery, one of false imprisonment and one theft of a motor vehicle.
He will appear at Wood Green crown court on October 15th.