Police are continuing to search for a former building society executive who went missing after being sacked.
It has emerged that Colin Morton from Whitley Bay had lost his job after an administrative error.
Five days later, on Christmas Eve, he failed to return home.
Police want to trace a man who was seen walking into the sea that morning, close to the town's Rendezvous Cafe.
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Teesside Crown Court heard the 61-year-old made more than a million pounds profit running Albert Skip Hire in Darlington without a permit.
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The warning comes police received reports of men claiming to be builders targeting homes in Heaton.