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Rogue trader convicted

By Melton Times, on 29 November 2011

Qughie Doherty (21) received a 12 month suspended prison sentence, a three month night-time curfew and will be required to pay a total of £2,000 in compensation to his victim and to a company he stole Tarmac from.

Doherty, of Ceder Lodge, Radcliffe on Trent, was sentenced at Coventry Crown Court after pleading guilty to fraud in a case brought by Leicestershire County Council.

Doherty had cold-called the elderly Alzheimer’s sufferer last November and offered to resurface his drive for £502.

He started the work immediately and when he was asked why he was only doing the edges of the drive told the victim it would cost £1,500 if he wanted the drive doing completely. This left the pensioner feeling he had no option but to agree to the work.

Thankfully, a care worker visiting the house was concerned about why a perfectly reasonable drive was being ripped up and the matter was reported to Leicestershire Trading Standards.

Officers and the police visited the victim’s home and Doherty was arrested. Doherty had already convinced the victim he needed his patio cleaning for a further £1,000, but Trading Standards officers stepped in before this was paid.

In mitigation, the court heard Doherty had no previous convictions, had done his best to do the job properly and there was no overt pressure placed on the victim.

David Bull, head of Leicestershire Trading Standards, said: “I am pleased the court has taken this case seriously and that Mr Doherty has to personally compensate those affected by his actions and he faces prison if he commits a similar offence.”

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