Directors of two Stockton Borough based building companies have been sentenced after appearing at Teesside Crown Court today (23 February).
Jonathan Wilkie Jones, 33, the sole director of JBS Driveways Ltd in Billingham, was handed a 21 month prison sentence with a supervision order on release.
Rebecca Dack, 34, the sole director of JBS Home Improvements Ltd, which was also based in Billingham before it was dissolved, was given a nine month suspended prison sentence, suspended for 18 months with a Rehabilitation Activity Order.
The court heard how the two businesses worked in partnership between August 2014 and October 2015.
During this time the pair failed to adequately complete building work at multiple addresses across the North East and made misleading statements to customers, including that they were not entitled to cancel the contract without a penalty and requesting payment to order materials which were not ordered or supplied.
At an earlier hearing on 23 January, Mr Jones of Hazel Slade in Eaglescliffe, pleaded guilty to five counts of fraud by false representation, two counts of money laundering and 23 counts of breaching the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.
Ms Dack, of Anlaby Close in Billingham, pleaded guilty to 10 counts of breaching the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.
In mitigation, Mr Jones’ defence presented positive character references and said that he had completed work that customers were satisfied with.
The defence for Ms Dack said that she was neglectful rather than dishonest, she wasn’t aware of Jones’ history with Trading Standards, and that she distanced herself from his business when it became clear the work wasn’t to standard.
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Access, Communities and Community Safety, Councillor Steve Nelson, said: “Mr Jones and Ms Dack have behaved recklessly and unacceptably. Their actions have caused upset and angst for many people living across the region so I’m pleased the court has acknowledged this and the sentences reflect the severity of their actions.
“The Council’s Trading Standard’s team investigate reports of sub-standard work and I hope this case will highlight that all traders must take their legal obligations seriously.”
For help and advice from Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Trading Standards team, call 01642 526560 or email [email protected]