A profoundly deaf man has been jailed for up to 18 months for breaching professional standards while working as a builder.
Roy Davis, of Leicester, had already admitted several offences between 2013 and 2017, while working under the trade names of ‘All In Builder’ and ‘All In Home Improvements Ltd.’
He had previously been sentenced in2013, but had presented the court with a letter of apology and agreed to comply with industry regulations and further court orders.
However, Mr Davis allegedly continued to work with the same disregard for his clients. In 2015 he was taken to court by a couple who he charged nearly £5,000 for a loft conversion which they later decided against. Davis refused to refund their money, falsely claiming he had already purchased the supplies for the work.
The court ordered Davis to repay the couple at £150/month, but he continued to seek other work and engage in bad practice.
One of his latest clients is believed to have paid over £18,000 for work which was incomplete and useless. The value of the work carried out was estimated to actually be worth less than £400 – and cost over £10,000 to be corrected by a third party.
The client said; “Roy has literally wrecked my home, relationships with neighbours and my marriage.”
The judge at his trial said: “He’s shown a blatant disregard for the fact he was on court bail awaiting trial for identical offences.”
The defence team allegedly attempted to claim Davis’s deafness meant his written and spoken English skills were low, but the prosecution declared that all of the clients had managed to communicate with Davis easily, through speech, lip-reading, texts and sign language.
Ron Ruddock, of Leicester City Council, said of the result; “Not only were the householders’ finances damaged, in many cases they lost life savings, their properties were damaged – with electrics exposed and leaking roof work – their relationships were also affected.
“These aren’t simple contractual disputes with customers, they are criminal offences and if people go out of their way to rip people off in this way we will seek to bring them to justice.”
The Limping Chicken is the world's most popular Deaf blog, and is edited by Deaf journalist and filmmaker Charlie Swinbourne.
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