Ndayishimye Shabani pleaded guilty to three offences of money laundering amounting to over £190,000
An Enfield businessman has been jailed for 14 months after admitting a series of money laundering offences.
Ndayishimye Shabani, who was Director of Protek Property Solutions Ltd which is based in East Ham, pleaded guilty to three offences of money laundering amounting to over £190,000.
Shabani was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court yesterday (Thursday 8th). It followed a “meticulous investigation” by Hertfordshire County Council’s trading standards officers.
Over the course of the hearings, the court heard that the fraud was uncovered after a Stevenage resident employed Protek Property Solutions Ltd to repair their leaking roof in March 2022. The two men who turned up initially agreed that the job would cost £1,600 for the minor repairs.
But later on, they claimed that the roof was in a worse state than first thought and it would now cost £20,000 to repair. A price of £18,000 was agreed upon with payment of £15,500 to be paid during the works and the rest to be paid upon completion. The £15,500 was paid in instalments directly into Shabani’s personal account.
A complaint was then made to the local trading standards team as the Stevenage resident realised that the price was excessive. During the investigation it became clear that the work quoted was not necessary and that the traders had been falsely claiming membership of Check-A-Trade. A further victim was then identified from Havering and, by using similar tactics, a further £70,000 was fraudulently acquired.
Further investigation by trading standards revealed Shabani also received payments from other roofing companies acting fraudulently. A similar pattern emerged of unnecessary or grossly overcharged roofing and building works to victims’ homes in and around London. In total, evidence of £192,750 of fraudulent money was found passing through Shabani’s account from five victims of three companies.
They then worked with victims to secure refunds of approximately £220,000, including sums which had not passed through Shabani’s account, and restrained all £29,000 that Shabani had remaining in his bank account.
Hertfordshire’s trading standards has now applied for the money they were able to restrain to be returned to the victims, to compensate those who came forward to provide evidence and to ensure that Shabani won’t benefit from his crimes.
Morris Bright, executive member for public health and community safety at Hertfordshire County Council, said: “I’m pleased that our trading standards teams have brought Shabani to justice and that the money restrained is being returned to its rightful owners.
“I would encourage members of the public to remain vigilant to this type of fraud. If you do require repairs to your home or garden please always use those registered with the Which? Trusted Trader scheme.”