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'He robs Peter to pay Paul' - Rogue builder who conned homeowners told he will be jailed

PUBLISHED: 14:39 11 February 2019 | UPDATED: 14:40 11 February 2019

Andrew Jay has been told he will be jailed after appearing at Ipswich Crown Court, pictured.  Picture: ARCHANT

Andrew Jay has been told he will be jailed after appearing at Ipswich Crown Court, pictured. Picture: ARCHANT

A rogue trader who conned homeowners by failing to complete building work at their properties has been told he will be jailed when he is sentenced next month.

Judge David Goodin agreed to adjourn sentence on single father of two, Andrew Jay, until the week commencing March 11 to allow him to get his affairs in order.

Judge Goodin warned 56-year-old Jay that a prison sentence was inevitable but said he was prepared to allow him to remain on bail until the sentencing hearing as he had always attended court in the past.

The court heard that Jay was jailed for 28 months in 2014 for a string of similar offences which involved him pocketing thousands of pounds from customers for work he never completed.

On Monday (Feb 11) Jay, of Park Road, Lowestoft, pleaded guilty to six offences of fraud between August 2016 and July 2017.

He also admitted theft and breaching an ASBO (anti-social behaviour order) made by Norwich Crown Court in 2014 which banned him from operating a building company and entering into contracts which failed to abide by conditions.

Jay also admitted breaching a suspended sentence order of 16 months imprisonment suspended for two years imposed at Ipswich Crown Court in April 2017 for three offences of breaching a criminal behaviour order.

The fraud offences relate to properties in Essex Road, Marbella Green, Church Road and Corton Road in Lowestoft, Seafield Road North, Caister and Carlton Square, Carlton Colville.

A hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act will take place in June.

Mark Roochove for Jay said his client was a “reasonable” builder who was unable to keep his finances in order.

“That makes him no less guilty of what he has done,” said Mr Roochove.

“He robs Peter to pay Paul to keep things afloat but unfortunately they come crashing down,” he added.

During Jay’s sentencing hearing in 2014 the court heard he had advertised locally and used a number of fake names when visiting potential customers to give quotes.

After agreeing to carry out work Jay started work but in some cases he didn’t complete it and asked for more money.

At four properties work was never started and ten customers paid Jay almost £50,000. The court heard that only £250 had been repaid despite promises to repay more.

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