Rogue Trader Scams Over £30,000 From Elderly Home Owners
Dolphus Gaskin was sentenced to four years in December 2018 at Chester Crown Court after defrauding vulnerable and elderly people in Cheshire out of £33,000.
Between January 2017 and March 2018, 25-year-old Gaskin cold called homes in the area after noticing damage to their roof or that their guttering needed cleaning. He would agree a small fee before later inflating the prices astronomically, to hundreds, thousands and even tens of thousands of pounds. But the work was never completed, and often the work Mr Gaskin was paid for wasn’t even required.
Although he was caught in Cheshire, Mr Gaskin previously travelled around England deploying the same tactics to earn himself a dishonest wage.
However, his downfall came in Runcorn, Cheshire when he appeared to push his luck a little too far.
Mr Gaskin, targeted an elderly woman in the area telling her that her gutters needed cleaning, stating that it would cost £40. This was later increased to £400 even though no work was ever completed.
The lady reported this to Cheshire Police, who opened up an investigation into Mr Gaskin’s activity.
Following the Cheshire Police investigation into the incident in Runcorn, cases against Mr Gaskin were re-opened in Avon and Somerset, whilst fresh cases were brought in Southampton and Nantwich.
Mr Gaskin was charged with seven counts of fraud by false representation and one count of theft. He pleaded guilty to five counts of fraud by false representation and one count of theft. He was found not guilty of the other two counts.
Mr Gaskin has also been to a Proceeds Of Crime Act (POCA) hearing, in an attempt to recover the money he made. A confiscation order to the value of £3,770 has also been made against him, meaning he will have to pay back around 10% of the proceeds he made from his fraudulent activity.