Two builders have been jailed today for engaging in unfair commercial practices and carrying out overpriced or unnecessary building work in Oxfordshire.

More than ten people have become victims of Trevor Bateman, 54, from Swindon and David Merriman, 49, from Nottingham who were convicted for various fraud-related charges at Oxford Crown Court.

The pair ran a business called AS Contractors; It has conned elderly homeowners out of thousands of pounds over period of two years.

David Marriman has been sent to prison for three-and-a-half years after being found guilty of 18 charges of fraud, misleading homeowners and performing poorly and simply unnecessary building work. Trevor Bateman was sentenced to four years for similar charges and transferring criminal property.

Judge Anthony King told the pair they had “proved themselves wholly unworthy to trade in any way in the building industry and run an extremely obnoxious scam.”

One of their clients, Mrs Thomas, was charged more than £6,000 for an unfinished bathroom. She told the Oxford Mail that she hoped this verdict will stop the two men from doing such things to other people in future. However, Mrs Thomas admitted she was not entirely convinced about this.

“I cannot tell you what a plausible sort of villain Mr Bateman is. He sounds so pleasant and would really do his best to assure you that you are going to be all right. I’m not surprised people were taken in.” Mrs Thomas said.

Many of victims were old women who lived alone, including Jean Price, who paid £47,000 for work valued at less than £10,000.

How do you feel about people who have become victims of building fraud? Is there any advice you would like to give to people to avoid such disappointments?  Share your thoughts by commenting here: