Back in 2012, the owner of a caravan dealership was jailed for a total of 31 months for a series of fraudulent actions which netted him over £72,000. Sean Cole, 46, of Torpoint in Devon, admitted and was convicted of 13 counts of fraud whilst he was the boss of Plymouth Caravan Centre in Plympton, Devon which has since closed down. Mr. Cole’s activity should act as a warning to caravan owners who are looking to sell their caravans via a dealer on a commission basis.
It was originally heard in Plymouth Crown Court that Cole had sold customers’ caravans for a lesser price than he disclosed, pocketing the difference himself as well as selling others which he didn’t even tell the vendors about and keeping those proceeds in their entirety before his business eventually went bust. He was guilty too of inflating prices for the servicing of their vehicles and also inflated the value of an insurance claim when 14 caravans were damaged whilst in his possession. These offences took place between January and October 2007.
Returning to court recently however, it was ruled by Judge Paul Darlow that he only had to pay £2,000 back as per the Proceeds of Crime Act as this was the sum total of his realisable assets. He has 6 months to find the money or he could end up back in jail. This will be of little comfort however to the victims of his little spree, who lost between £561 to £9,000 each, with the insurance company losing £11,000. The £2,000 is to be split pro rata between the victims, meaning heavy losses all round.
Caravan owners should be wary when selling their caravans via dealers, the vast majority of which are not unscrupulous of course, but it pays to research the dealer you are choosing to give yourself peace of mind. One thing you can always rely on however is the ability to find a great deal on your caravan insurance here at CompareCrazy.com. The business insurance comparison site!
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