RESIDENTS have been advised not to leave old clothes out for collection by companies that may be involved in a charity scam.
A firm called W&W Help Limited is leafleting Hounslow households asking for old clothes to be left out in bags and claiming a percentage of the money raised goes to a breast cancer charity.
It also says the items will be sent "to the Third World to clothe the poor".
The Chronicle was contacted this week by Barbara Millar of Maswell Park Road, Hounslow, who found one of the leaflets pushed through her letterbox.
Mrs Millar found several articles and forums on the internet discussing W&W Help Limited and discovered complaints had been received from other areas, including High Wycombe and Darlington.
She said: "I found a lot of warning messages about this."
The company only provides an email address on the bottom of the leaflet.
When the Chronicle tried to contact the firm by email, the message was returned, with a message that the email account had been discontinued.
Trading standards officers have now warned householders to be wary of leaflets asking for the collection of clothing from doorsteps.
A spokesman for Hounslow Council said: "The organisations that collect the sacks are often limited companies that sell the contents and pocket the profits with nothing, or very little, going to charity.
"To be registered as a charity, organisations must use a certain proportion of their income for good causes. If the details of the organisations say it is a limited company then the proportion given is either not high enough or non-existent."
Anyone receiving leaflets can also contact Consumer Direct on 08454 040506.