Roofer jailed for fraud

Published: 28 Nov 2018

A St Albans roofer who targeted “vulnerable” residents through cold calling has been jailed for 27 months.


Simon Dooley, of Watling Street Caravan Park in St Albans, pleaded guilty to fraudulent trading under section 9 of the Fraud Act 2006 when he appeared at court earlier this month.  The case was adjourned until last Thursday (22) for sentencing.


The court heard that Dooley, 53, traded under the name “Elite Roofing and Building” and, along with those working with him, cold called consumers who were often “vulnerable due to their age or health”.


The common feature of the interactions was the initial identification of a small piece of work that supposedly needed to be done, leading very swiftly to the identification of further, far more extensive and far more expensive work.


In total, he received just over £6,000 from seven of the consumers he targeted, with £11,170 requested in total.


In sentencing, Judge Peter Rook QC noted that the defendant had shown remorse and taken responsibility for his actions, and that was not in good health himself.


However, he added that Dooley’s action were intimidating, demeaning, inappropriate, and caused embarrassment and mental anguish to his victims.


He sentenced Dooley to 27 months in prison and ordered him to pay a victim surcharge of £170.


The court heard that the defendant had appeared before the court on 31 previous occasions, resulting in convictions for 59 offences.


Councillor Terry Hone, Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said: “Customers should be able to trust companies, rather than have them take advantage of them.


“The defendant showed a cunning disregard for the people he was trying to get work from, and we will not hesitate to take action in cases such as these.”