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News : Suspended Jail Term for Swansea Call Centre Boss
Swansea, Wales, April 13, 2016 -- A call centre boss in Swansea has been handed a suspended jail sentence after an investigation found his company had bombarded people with calls making false promises that it could get them compensation on their energy bills.
A court heard in some cases vulnerable and elderly people handed over large sums of money.
Clive Davies, aged 41, of Bryntirion Hill, Bridgend, who was the director of Residential Redress Ltd based in Wind Street, appeared at Swansea Magistrates and pleaded guilty to breaches of the 2008 Consumer Protection Against Unfair Trading Regulations.
Mr Davies was sentenced to 24 weeks in jail suspended for two years and has been barred from being a director or being involved in the formation, promotion or management of a company for six years.
He was also given 200 hours unpaid work.
Swansea Council's Trading Standards started an investigation into the business in April 2014 following a series of complaints.
The company claimed that, for a fixed fee, it could help customers save money on energy bill and arrange for compensation to be paid to them when bill were overpaid.
Swansea Council said during the investigation, officers discovered that staff in the call centre were "bombarding customers with telephone calls" which eventually led to more vulnerable people agreeing to pay a fee.
David Picken, divisional officer for Trading Standards in Swansea, said: "A number of complainants contacted us after paying the company a fee to allegedly claim compensation against overpaid energy bills. The company clearly was in no position to make these promises and it resulted in many vulnerable customers paying out large sums of money under false pretences.
Fortunately many of the people that paid out money were eventually refunded."
The successful case follows on from another case in January where two men from Ammanford received similar suspended sentences for their involvement in a company called Nationwide Review Service Ltd.
Mr Picken added: "Companies like these pray on vulnerable and often elderly people in a bid to con them out of large sums of money. We are doing everything we can to make sure these companies cease to operate."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Thursday, April 14, 2016