Morecambe woman was 'confronted in her pyjamas' late at night by rogue trader who demanded £3,000

Crown Court
Crown Court

An aggressive trader confronted a customer in her nightwear and demanded the balance of her roofing work bill.

Daniel Austin Ward, 32, of home maintenance firm Nu Lids, appeared drunk when he turned up at her home in the Morecambe area - with three men waiting in a car close by - at 10.50pm, Preston Crown Court heard.

He also lay in wait for another couple as they returned home from a walk.

It formed a string of 12 unfair trading crimes he admits against home owners in north Lancashire, including aggressive commercial practice, giving a false business address, and using false endorsement logos.

Paula De Santana, from Morecambe, agreed to have extensive work done on her roof and driveway last April after spotting an advert, which had contained false endorsement logos - but halfway through the £8,000 job, Ward told her the full roof needed replacing at a further £6,000.

He pestered her for further money to 'pay his employees' and 'equipment'.

On June 4, the work was completed. Between 5pm and 7pm Ward, of Marine Road East, called her three times asking for a final payment but she refused to transfer it until she had inspected the work.

As she returned home from work at 8pm he was waiting for her. She asked him to leave to give her chance to view the work.

She ignored two further calls between 8pm and 10pm and a text at 10.25pm.

At 10.50pm he turned up at the door, sounding drunk, asking if she had transferred the money.

The court heard she could see three men waiting in his car and felt vulnerable as she was on her own in her nightwear, and agreed to transfer the remaining balance of £2,600.

Ward was due to complete other work but after concerns about the quality she cancelled it, and had to pay another workman £1,500 for remedial work.

Prosecuting for Lancashire Trading Standards, Jack Troup said in July 2017, Ward cold called at the home of a couple in Heysham and left a business card.

In a further visit he quoted a price of £1,150 for him to carry out work on soffits and fascias and fit a new front door.

They asked to see the paperwork before agreeing to the work.

Ward left their home and 10 minutes later they went for a walk, but as they got around the corner Ward, who had been in his van, approached them saying he had already completed the paperwork and ordered a new door.

The defiant couple stood firm and refused to sign the paperwork, but when they returned home Ward was waiting for them and they signed the paperwork. It did not contain a business address or cancellation notice.

During the work he continually asked for money and threatened not to continue with the work until further sums were paid.

Another man, who cares for his dad, enlisted Ward to do fascia and guttering work, but grew suspicious and contacted the

A price of £1,180 was quoted he paid a £300 advance.

The court heard he then had a ‘gut feeling’ and contacted the Confederation of Roofing Contractors (CORC) who confirmed Ward was not a member.

He canceled the contract and reported the matter to Trading Standards.

In May 2018 Ward approached a pensioner at her Heysham home whom he had previously done work for. They agreed £400 for fencing work but he gave her no cancellation rights.

He and another man painted her fencing and a handrail to a "poor quality".

A 70-year-old man in Heysham contacted Ward and asked him to remove tree stumps at the property. A price of £250 was agreed but the work was never completed or refunded.

The widower had to carry out the work himself with the aid of a neighbour.

Judge Parry said: "All of them had to remedy the defects in your work.

"All have expressed anger at the way they were treated by you.

"You were aggressive in your persistent demands for cash.

""You can see the distress and financial effects your offending has had on your victims, in particular the aggressive practices."

Ward was also sentenced for causing grievous bodily harm by throwing a brick in a man's face in Morecambe during a fight last October.

The victim suffered a haemorrhage in his eye, loose teeth and a fractured cheekbone and jaw requiring surgery.

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