Vic­tim of cow­boy builder ‘glad’ he’s be­hind bars

Western Mail - - NEWS -

A VIC­TIM of a cow­boy builder who left win­dows stained with ce­ment and took £1,000 for the plea­sure says she is “glad” he is be­hind bars.

Ian Cot­tle, who ran ACE Plas­ter­ing and Build­ing Ser­vices Ltd, was jailed for 22 months at Cardiff Crown Court on Tues­day. The 52-year-old from Brook Street, Barry, pleaded guilty to 14 counts un­der the Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion from Un­fair Trad­ing Reg­u­la­tions.

The court heard that Cot­tle made nearly £30,000 from six cus­tomers in 2016, but they had to pay out thou­sands more to cor­rect his shoddy work, and in some cases in­spec­tors found the work to be un­safe.

One of his vic­tims, Helen Cade, 45, and her part­ner Gary Jones, 43, from Barry, em­ployed Cot­tle to ren­der their home for a fee of £3,400.

They paid Cot­tle a £1,000 de­posit to carry out the works which were due to take two weeks. But things did not go to the home­own­ers’ plans and they found them­selves hav­ing to spend more money to re­pair the dam­age that Cot­tle’s work­men caused.

Helen said: “We were hav­ing our house ren­dered and they made an aw­ful mess. We had new win­dows put in that day and they got ce­ment all over them. It took us weeks to get all of this stuff off that dried all over the win­dows which was a shame.”

Days after the shoddy work had been car­ried out, Helen and Gary tried to con­tact Cot­tle by phone and emails but were un­able to get hold of him.

To add in­sult to in­jury, once the cou­ple em­ployed a rep­utable ren­derer to look at the work, they found that no wa­ter­proof­ing agent had been used and the work had to be com­pletely re-done.

Helen said: “All that time the win­dows weren’t sealed be­cause he had not used the ap­pro­pri­ate stuff we had asked him to use. We wanted to stop him from do­ing it to some­one else.”

The court heard that Cot­tle claimed he was City & Guilds qual­i­fied and was fully in­sured to carry out work but nei­ther of these claims were true.

Helen added: “I am just glad that he won’t be do­ing poor work­man­ship on any­one else’s prop­erty.”

Cot­tle was also dis­qual­i­fied from be­ing a com­pany di­rec­tor for five years and was or­dered to pay £2,000 in com­pen­sa­tion, plus £2,000 costs.

> Ian Cot­tle

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