Three Irish nationals, who allegedly ran a roof fixing scam targeting pensioners in Sydney, have been arrested trying to leave Australia.

James O'Driscoll, 20, and Johnny Baker, 22, appeared before Sutherland Local Court after allegedly defrauding a 72-year-old man out of AUD$42,000 (€26,000) after offering to do roof repairs.

Neither applied for bail and both cases were adjourned until 29 March.

A third Irish national, aged 20, was arrested at Sydney airport by police on 7 March attempting to board a flight to the UK.

He is due to appear before Sutherland Local Court in Sydney tomorrow.

The three men were arrested by a special task force, which was set up to investigate a series of alleged frauds targeting elderly homeowners.

Police have confirmed they are searching for a fourth person believed to have been involved in the scam.

Detectives are also liaising with other police commands and Victoria Police in relation to similar offences involving elderly victims.