Boss jailed after elderly victims conned in £42k mobility aids swindle
THE boss of two former mobility companies has been jailed after admitting defrauding elderly victims out of more than £40,000.
The case, which featured on the BBC's Watchdog programme, involved one of the biggest investigations Derbyshire County Council's trading standards team has carried out.
It had received a wave of complaints about companies Virgo Healthcare Limited and Lifestyle.
Both were run from premises on Gainsborough Business Park, Long Eaton, by husband and wife Amarjit, 51, and Ranjit Gill, 45.
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Yesterday, at Leicester Crown Court, Amarjit Gill was sentenced to 18 months in prison for what Judge Ebraham Mooncey described as "disgraceful activities".
At a previous hearing, both Gills had admitted 25 separate counts of fraud which saw them make £42,515 from elderly victims.
Ranjit Gill was given a 12-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid community work.
The couple, of Brackenfield Drive, Giltbrook, were banned from being directors for five years.
Their staff sold mobility aids – including reclining chairs, orthopaedic beds and walk-in showers, costing up to £3,892, to elderly buyers through home visits after speculative telesales calls.
Some of the fraud offences related to the victims not being given their money back when they tried to cancel but, in the worst cases, the goods were not even delivered.
Councillor Kevin Parkinson, said: "These crimes targeted some of the most vulnerable members of our communities in their homes. The judge in this case acknowledged Amarjit Gill's total disregard for a six-month suspended prison sentence made against him in February 2011 after we took action against his previous company ABM Mobility."
David Messom, 27, of Maws Lane, Kimberley, and Samuel Routh, 26, of Wilkinson Close, Chilwell, were employed by the Gills as managers.
Messom was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years, and ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid community work, after pleading guilty to nine fraud charges.
Routh was sentenced to nine months in prison, suspended for two years, and told to do 180 hours of unpaid community work, after pleading guilty to eight fraud charges.
Both companies are no longer trading.