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Prolific rogue trader jailed after conning customers out of more than £60,000

Fraudster preyed on "defenceless, trusting members of the public" court hears

William Walker

Reporter:

William Walker

Email:

william.walker@newburynews.co.uk

Contact:

01635 886641

Court

A prolific rogue trader who conned “defenceless, trusting members of the public” out of more than £60,000 has been jailed for three-and-a-half years.

Daniel Collins, aged 31, was jailed after a string of aggressive selling and over-charging for various works carried out at six properties in Newbury, Hungerford, Swindon, Devizes and Woodley.

In one case a victim was charged £29,000 to have his driveway and path renewed over the space of one weekend, five times more than what it would have cost if done by a professional.

Collins pleaded guilty to six counts of fraud by false representation and three counts of aggressive trading before being sentenced and jailed at Reading Crown Court on July 27.

At the time Collins was committing the offences he was on licence from prison, having previously pleaded guilty to other fraud-related matters and had been previously convicted in 2009 for conspiracy to defraud and again in 2013 for fraud.

In passing sentence, the offences were described as “wicked frauds on defenceless, trusting members of the public”.

West Berkshire Council’s executive member for public protection, Marcus Franks, said: “This sentence reflects that these were significant frauds carried out by a serial offender on trusting members of the public.

“It follows a substantial investigation led by the Trading Standards service working with colleagues from neighbouring authorities and Thames Valley Police.

“Tackling fraudulent trading of this nature remains a high priority and allegations will be investigated and where appropriate lead to prosecution.”

Anyone wishing to report trading standards matters can contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0345 4040506.

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