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Rogue gardener guilty of fraud

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A rogue gardener who made false claims to attract customers on Facebook and then carried out poor work, which he failed to finish, has landed a court bill of £2,360 and a 12-month community order.

James Worsey, aged 27, of Halesowen Road, Dudley, who traded as KJGS Gardening Services, admitted being involved in a fraudulent business at Dudley Magistrates Court on May 9.

Dudley Council, prosecuting, told the court two customers from Quarry Bank and Halesowen employed and paid Worsey to carry out garden improvements after seeing his false claims to have had a number of satisfied commercial clients.

In both cases he failed to advise of cancellation rights and carried out work of such poor quality it had to be re-done.

In Quarry Bank he installed a fence, which fell over the next day, and an Astro Turf lawn, which had to be re-laid. He dumped rubbish on a neighbour’s garden after charging to remove it and failed to return to complete the job or remedy the problems.

In Halesowen he installed an Astro Turf lawn, which was so uneven it had to be taken up and re-laid, failed to lay drains properly, charged for a skip, which he didn’t provide and left rubbish on site.

The court imposed a 12-month community order on Worsey with a 6-month curfew between 7.30pm to 7.30am and ordered him to pay £1,660 in compensation to the two customers and £700 in costs.

Councillor Patrick Harley, leader of Dudley Council said:

This prosecution sends out a clear message we will protect consumers from the activity of rogue traders who flout the law and carry out sub standard work.
This kind of activity causes a huge amount of distress to the victims who have worked hard and saved to pay for improvements to their homes and are then badly let down.”

Dudley Council has a number of services set up to protect residents from rogue traders. Anyone who is suspicious of doorstep callers can call the Bogus Caller Hotline on 01384 812045 to report an incident 24/7.

In addition, Dudley trading standards, in partnership with Age UK Dudley, offers the Fix a Home list of local approved traders who provide services of a high standard at a fair cost.

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