Police are appealing for help to trace a trio of youngsters claiming to be collecting sponsorship for a charity bike ride.
The boys, aged between eight and 10 years old, had called to an address in Tennyson Avenue, Hebburn, asking to be sponsored for a bike ride they were going to be embarking on.
They told the occupant they were from a boxing club in Jarrow, and they were raising money for Help for Heroes.
A small amount of cash was handed over to them.
The householder later contacted police after becoming suspicious.
Inquiries have revealed the boxing club isn’t believed to exist.
The three boys were wearing white T-shirts, one had red hair and all three had bikes with them.
Anyone with information on the incident which happened between 6pm and 8pm on Wednesday is asked to contact police on 101 ext 69191.
Callers are asked to quote number 1185 21/05/14, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.