A FRAUDSTER has been brought to justice, thanks to the efforts of Hampshire County Council’s Trading Standards team.

Christopher Maughan cold-called at people’s houses, falsely claiming to be working on a neighbour’s property and then started work without permission.

Maughan, 33, of Carousel Park, Micheldever, would clean a prominent section of driveway without permission. This tactic was in order to persuade the residents to have the rest of their driveway cleaned.

When the residents refused, he would do the work anyway.

He pleaded guilty to four offences under the Fraud Act 2006 and four offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008, when he appeared at Southampton Crown Court.

Cllr Roy Perry, leader of Hampshire County Council, said: “This is an extremely positive result for our Trading Standards Service and shows that through the use of our dedicated investigative skills and the help of the public, who report these crimes, we can ensure that people who engage in fraudulent activity are prosecuted.”

Following complaints from residents, and information from the police, Trading Standards officers investigated the cold-caller, eventually bringing him to court.

He was sentenced to eight months in prison for the fraud and aggressive commercial practices, and a further six months for breach of a previous suspended jail sentence.

Maughan was also made subject to a four year Criminal Behaviour Order.

That will prevent him from cold calling, making false claims or carrying out any work without a homeowner’s written permission.