Apparently, a rogue builder has recently conned a homeowner out of thousands of pounds, threatening that if he didn’t pay up, he would be “taken into the woods.”

According to the court, the incident took place in Sanderstead and the homeowner was faced with poor quality and “never ending” work. This work should have also cost around £8,000 to complete. Instead, the victim was actually conned out of £120,000. And now, it will take a further £45,000 for his home to be repaired.

The court found that the victim was conned by builder Stuart Ackerley to hand over checks for shoddy work that even shocked surveyors. Or, for work that was never actually completed. The conman builder didn’t hang around before spending this money either. Apparently, he splashed out on jewellery, a new car and even a home gym!

The courts heard that even at one point, the builder threatened his victim stating that he would be “taken into the woods” if he didn’t pay.

Despite these allegations though, Ackerly denied charges of rogue trading and fraud. The prosecution described that the victim, Mr Gavali, often felt intimidated into paying the builder the money. Or, felt the work was past the “point of no return.”

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Mr Gavli inherited the house from his deceased father. He initially hired the builder to do some painting and decorating. However, Ackerly soon began to suggest different jobs that he felt needed to be completed. And by the time he was finished, Trading Standards describe that the house was left in a “shocking state”.

The prosecutor stated: “his report found that the majority of the works on the property were unnecessary or had been done in such an incompetent manner that the true value of the works was no more than £8,000 but that the cost of remedial work to put it right would be as much as £45,000.”

“The chimney stack wasn’t straight, brickwork was poorly bonded, flooring had unnecessarily been removed, signs of water penetration into the garage had begun showing, the roof was distorted and tiling on the roof and in the bathroom was uneven and haphazard, to name but a fraction of the problems that existed.”

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Despite all of this, and his threatening behaviour though, Ackerly still denies the charges. He did, however, admit to illegally using the Guild of Master Tradesmen logo on his business correspondence. As the trial continues, the prosecution has stated: “from the first moment Mr Ackerly set foot into Mr Gavali’s home to the moment he was made to leave, he lied and exploited a man all too willing to believe him whilst bleeding him dry of his savings.”

So what do you think of this of this? Let us know what you think in the comments below.


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