Eight men have been arrested following raids across England over a number of scam text messages duping victims out of cash during lockdown.

The suspects were allegedly involved in sending scam text messages, primarily posing as Royal Mail asking customers to pay a fee to retrieve a parcel for delivery.

Raids were carried out in London, Coventry, Birmingham and Colchester, a specialist unit of the City of London and Metropolitan Police said.

The unit detailed how the arrests were part of a week of action against such scam messages.

Detective Chief Inspector Gary Robinson, head of the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU), said: "The success of these operations shows how through our close collaboration with Royal Mail, the financial services sector and mobile phone networks we are cracking down on the criminals ruthlessly targeting the public.

"Ongoing investigations are now under way and we will continue to work together to bring those committing smishing scams to justice."

A man from London was charged with three offences while seven others were released pending further investigation.

The man charged will appear at Inner London Crown Court on June 21.

He will face charges of fraud by false representation, possession of articles for use in fraud and possession of criminal property, a spokeswoman for the DCPCU said.