Two people successfully prosecuted following unfair trading of second-hand vehicles.
Sean Myler, 38, of Portland Road, Warrington, pleaded guilty to four offences at Crewe Magistrates Court.
Mr Myler faced prosecution under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. Charges related to providing misleading information to consumers when they purchased second hand vehicles from him as a sales person at Prestige and Performance Motors Ltd.
His associate, John Cansfield, 47, of The Knoll, Runcorn, also pleaded guilty to two similar offences at the same hearing.
The trading standards investigation focused on five complaints received by Warrington Borough Council’s trading standards team from consumers who purchased second-hand cars from them.
Consumers reported that they had been misled into believing that the vehicles were in ‘excellent condition’ when this was not the case and the vehicles required remedial repairs to deal with faults.
One consumer also reported Mr Myler attempted to mislead him into thinking the car sale was a ‘private sale’ and was not being sold as part of their business activities.
In all cases, the consumers had reported the issues to the trader but were unsuccessful in resolving the problems they experienced with the vehicles.
During the trail in May, both Mr Myler and Mr Cansfield pleaded guilty. Prosecuting Counsel, Daniel Brayley, explained in detail the facts surrounding each of the five consumer’s interactions with the defendants and the losses they incurred.
In sentencing, His Honour District Judge Saunders, accepted the prosecution’s desire to prioritise compensation for the consumers, agreeing to a figure of £2,900, and made compensation orders accordingly. No separate financial penalty was put forward and an 18 month conditional discharge was imposed instead.
Mr Myler was ordered to pay prosecution costs in the sum of £5,500 and Mr Cansfield was ordered to pay £2,500, plus a victim surcharge levy of £22 per offence was also added.
Cllr Hitesh Patel, cabinet member for environment, housing and public protection, said: “Buying a second-hand car is a large expense and a big commitment so consumers have the right to know they’re not being misled.
“We are pleased to have another successful outcome in court and the consumers involved have been able recoup some of their costs after their experience with Prestige and Performance Motors Ltd.
“If you feel like you have been misled or would like to report any unfair trading practices, you can get in touch with the Citizen’s Advice service for advice and support.”
Warrington trading standards, in partnership with Citizens Advice consumer helpline, provide consumer advice and support for trading standards. For more information, visit the Citizen’s Advice website, complete the online complaint form, or call the helpline number on 0808 223 1133 (open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm).
For more information on consumer rights, visit: citizensadvice.org.uk.