Door-to-door fraudster prosecuted

Warrington man fined for claiming to be authorised by trading standards to canvas door-to-door. Published: Friday, 3rd May 2019

Warrington man fined for claiming to be authorised by trading standards to canvas door-to-door.

Robert James Morris, aged 45, of Fairfield and Howley, Warrington, pleaded guilty at Warrington Magistrates Court on 24 April to creating the impression that he was authorised by trading standards to go door-to-door, when no such authorisation was in place.

The council’s trading standards team received a number of complaints from residents across the borough who Mr Morris had visited as he attempted to buy broken jewellery. Members of the public were suspicious about his activities and reported their concerns to the council and Cheshire Police.

Mr Morris had a hand-made, laminated ID badge featuring the wording, “Trading standards authorise Robert Morris to canvas door to door”. This was untrue as no such authorisation had been given.

In offering mitigation, Mr Morris’ solicitor stated that he had no intention to take advantage of the public. The defendant entered a guilty plea to the offence of engaging in an unfair commercial practice, contrary to the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. He was fined £120, plus £350 towards costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

Warrington Borough Council’s director of public health, Dr Muna Abdel Aziz, said: “It is unacceptable for traders to try and gain an unfair commercial advantage by claiming to be authorised by the council. False claims like these are intended to deliberately mislead residents and our trading standards team will take action against such claims in order to protect local people.”

If you have concerns regarding door-to-door sales people, report them to trading standards on 0345 4040506.