Bogus builder jailed for fraud

Steven Trendell of Monks Green, Fetcham, Leatherhead, has been sentenced to 18 months in prison​ at Kingston Crown Court (4 April) after pleading guilty to two allegations of fraud.

Mr Trendell who owned the company Home Edge Heating and Plumbing, received 18 months for fraudulent trading and causing a loss to homeowners of £51,200. He also got sentenced to 9 months for falsifying documents, being a member of trade organisations and his qualifications as a structural engineer. Both sentences are to be served concurrently.

Mr Trendell was investigated after Kingston Council’s trading standards received complaints. During 2014 and 2015 he carried out works to two adjoining properties in Surbiton without obtaining necessary permissions. His workmanship was beyond his competencies as a builder and he vastly overcharged the homeowners without completing the jobs, which would require further works to make it safe.

Another Kingston resident also contacted trading standards with concerns about the quality of his work to relocate their boiler. When asked for a gas safety certificate, Mr Trendell provided a forged document signed by someone who was out of the country at the time.

In passing the sentence, His Honour Judge Campbell said that the families concerned had suffered a great deal of anxiety because of him and the appalling consequences of his cheating. It was clear that Mr Trendell had left behind a trail of devastation, anxiety and that although the court had given him the opportunity to make some reparation to the consumers, he had not done so and they remain out of pocket.

Stephen Evans, Director, Communities at Kingston Council, said: We take these matters very seriously and will not tolerate rogue trading in the borough. These type of offences undermine public confidence in the majority of tradesmen who are both skilled and honest. We will continue to work to ensure that rogues like Mr Trendell are brought to the attention of the court.