COWBOY BOSS TOOK FAMILY’S £30,000 AND LEFT Victims tell of relief after smooth-talking rogue builder is jailed
A VICTIM of a rogue trader jailed for making false promises has spoken of her relief that the ordeal is over.
Paula Cryan welcomed the news that cowboy builder Jonathan Ross Bell has been locked up after he was found guilty at a court hearing.
Bell was jailed for 18 months after he pleaded guilty to five offences of engaging in an unfair commercial practice, in breach of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations.
The father of two was branded a liar by the recorder.
North Tyneside Council, who prosecuted him, said they had received 70 complaints about his businesses.
Now the 45-year-old, of Kendal Avenue, Cullercoats, North Tyneside, has been deprived of his freedom.
Paula had contracted one of his companies, Viking Building Services, to carry out an extension on the family home in Dudley, North Tyneside, but the work was not completed.
It was left to an army of volunteers to finish the work for her disabled son Taylor.
Paula recalled Bell as a smooth talker who had filled her with confidence when she paid £30,000 cash upfront.
But she saw a different side to the former Army man when work slowed down and eventually stopped.
She said: “His imprisonment puts an end to it now.
“I was surprised he was put in prison because I thought he would get away with a suspended sentence.
“But I am pleased the judge saw through him.
“At the beginning he seemed a lovely bloke, dead caring, but it did not last.
“He was quite arrogant when it became clear that the work was not going to be finished.
“I did not go to court because I did not want to get emotional.”
The Sunday Sun told Paula’s story last year when we reported how she had been let down by Bell.
We revealed how the plumbing and electrics were not done leaving the house like a building site.
Taylor, then 11, has complex mobility issues.
Paula and her husband Michael remortgaged their home to pay for the extension.
Paula said: “Taylor has been diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder or a SWAN syndrome (Syndrome Without A Name).
“Taylor is developmentally delayed, kicks out, and head bangs a lot.
“He is unable to talk, suffers a lot from anxiety, and he is also unable to walk a long distance.”
After reading our story an army of volunteers offered to finish the job at no cost at the Cryan family.
At the time, Bell claimed the job had over-ran and he was going to go to Paula with a proposition once he had been able to fund the job.
In court it was claimed he had been let down by suppliers.
But Recorder Tony Hawks told him: “You were, in my judgement, taking money from members of the public and promising to carry out work for them when you knew, or must have known, there was no realistic prospect