Rogue trader fined for tricking woman out of £3k for work never completed
A rogue trader took advantage of a vulnerable woman by taking more than £3,700 for work he never completed.
Austin Jackson had taken the money from the woman in the Great Barr area and promised to carry out work in her loft and fit a brand new kitchen.
Jackson, from Wolverhampton, took the cash with no intention of carrying out the work – and left the victim without funds to employ someone else to carry out the work.
He appeared at Wolverhampton Magistrates' Court on December 6, where he pleaded guilty to offences under the Fraud Act 2006, Theft Act 1968 and the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.
The court ordered him to repay the customer back in full – as well as to pay £2,000 in costs and a victim surcharge of £80.
He was also given a three-month weekend curfew and will have to wear a tag to monitor his movements. The prosecution was brought by Sandwell Council’s trading standards.
Bob Charnley, Sandwell’s trading standards manager and licensing manager, said: “I welcome this result as it shows traders cannot get away with taking advantage of people when they are vulnerable.
“We all have difficult times in our lives and we don’t expect to be exploited by unscrupulous individuals.”
He added that trading standards officers recommended that any residents who are thinking of having work done on their home spend time researching traders.
Councillor Elaine Costigan, cabinet member for public health and protection, said: “Trading standards in Sandwell works hard to protect consumers and honest traders in the borough, but unfortunately this is far from an isolated incident.
“Fortunately most businesses are honest.”
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