Rogue Trader Brought to Book in Burnham-on-Sea
Thursday 25th April 2013 saw officers of Burnham-on-Sea Police Station making targeted patrols of the area as part of National Rogue Trader Week. Officers engaged on the operation checked any traders who were seen to be working on addresses in the area, to check their identities and compliance with regulations governing work which is canvassed from door-to-door selling practices (cold calling).
As a result of the day’s activities, a trader was arrested in Burnham-on-Sea for a trading standards offence and dealt with under the Fraud Act. He had been caught in the act of working on a vulnerable, older-adult’s house, where he had charged an unjustifiably large sum of money for carrying out a simple cleaning job on the guttering of the house.
The trader had failed to provide the householder with a written quote and cancellation notice in advance of starting the work, so fell afoul of the regulations governing doorstep sales. He reward was a trip to the custody unit and being held to account for his illegal trading practices.
Sgt Ash Jones lead the operation and is a member of the elite Senior Citizen Liaison Team, he commented;
“Rogue Trading concerns incidents where residents have been cold called and includes the practice of deliberately overcharging for unsatisfactory goods or services; charging for unnecessary work; damaging property deliberately, leaving work unfinished and intimidating behaviour in order to obtain money”
“Check the identity of any caller by telephoning the company they say they are from. Use the telephone number in your local directory or provided by your service provider. Ask a neighbour or friend nearby to check out the caller before you open the door or agree to have work done. Don't be pressurised into having work done on the spot. Never pay cash up front or go to a bank or cash point with a trader ~ If you suspect a rogue trader at your door call 999
And remember….If in doubt, keep them out”