Online directory slugged $120,000 for misleading conduct – media release

The Supreme Court has imposed penalties totalling $120,000 against a company and its director for engaging in misleading conduct to sign up South Australian schools for online advertising.

Lukeleo Pty Ltd and its director/shareholder Luke Farrell were fined after admitting to making various false and misleading representations, in breach of the Australian Consumer Law.

Read more – online directory slugged $120,000 for misleading conduct (PDF 102KB)


Public warning issued against SA builder – media release

South Australia’s consumer watchdog has issued a public warning against building company Fenbreeze Homes Pty Ltd and sole director Joseph Biju Kavilpurayidathil – on the basis they allegedly accepted payment for services they failed to deliver, and provided fake building indemnity insurance certificates to some of its clients.

Commissioner for Consumer Affairs Dini Soulio said Consumer and Business Services has also cancelled the building work contractor’s licence for the business, which is based in Ferryden Park, and Mr Kavilpurayidathil after numerous complaints from clients

Media release – public warning issued against SA builder (PDF 91KB)

Public warning notice (PDF 66KB)


Strong penalty for builder who left clients ‘high and dry’ – media release

An unlicensed builder who took more than $60,000 in deposit payments from clients for work that was never started and his business have been fined $70,000 and ordered to pay compensation in excess of $80,000 for breaches of the Australian Consumer Law and the Building Work Contractors Act 1995.

In addition to the penalties, 56 year old Michael Carl Butson of Smoky Bay has also been disqualified from managing a corporation for eight years, after he and his business Morgan Retaining Walls, admitted to accepting payment for goods and services that were not supplied and accepting authorised payments.

Media release – Strong penalty for builder who left clients ‘high and dry’ (PDF 141KB)


Unlicensed tradie fined $15,000 for breaches – media release

An unlicensed contractor who stole from one client and whose work was of such a poor standard his clients had to spend tens of thousands of dollars fixing it has been fined $15,000 and ordered to repay one of his victims $20,000 in the Adelaide Magistrates Court for breaches of the state’s Building Work Contractor’s Act.

Read the full media release – unlicensed tradie fined $15,000 for breaches (PDF 129KB)


Penalty welcomed for unlicensed builder – media release

South Australia’s consumer watchdog has welcomed the penalty and compensation totalling more than $25,000 imposed on an unlicensed builder who took money from two clients for work he never completed, before changing his business name to avoid detection by authorities.
In the Elizabeth Magistrates Court, 28 year old Simon Alan Maylin of Elizabeth Downs admitted to breaches of the Australian Consumer Law and the Building Work Contractors Act.
The court heard Maylin accepted a payment of $9120 for paving work that was never begun.

Media release – Penalty welcomed for unlicensed builder (PDF92KB)


Unlicensed tradesman penalised for dangerous fan installation – media release

An unlicensed tradesman whose failure to properly secure a series of ceiling fans posed a serious safety risk to his customer has been penalised more than $10,000.

In the Adelaide Magistrates Court, 51 year old Kawana Rothes George admitted to breaches of the Australian Consumer Law and the Plumbers, Gas Fitter and Electricians Act 1995.

Media release – Unlicensed tradesman penalised for dangerous fan installation (PDF 122KB)


Public warning against online ticket reseller – media release

South Australia’s consumer watchdog has warned members of the public to be extremely cautious in buying tickets from online reseller Viagogo.

Commissioner for Consumer Affairs Dini Soulio said Consumer and Business Services had received 80 inquiries from South Australians who had paid the site for tickets to events including upcoming Bruno Mars and Adam Lambert concerts

Media release – Public warning against online ticket reseller


Unlicensed air-conditioning contractor to pay – media release

A South Australian air-conditioning contractor has been ordered to pay more than $34,000 in compensation and fines in the Adelaide Magistrates Court.

Kain Selby-Fullgrabe, 43, sole director of Town and Country Building Management Pty Ltd, pleaded guilty to breaches of the Australian Consumer Law (SA) in the Adelaide Magistrates Court this week for aiding and abetting the company to take deposits from consumers and failing to provide the goods and services within a reasonable time.

The company also pleaded guilty to charges of carrying on business as a building work contractor and electrical contractor without a licence and five counts of accepting payment for services and not providing those services within a reasonable time.

The court heard that, on five separate occasions between September 2014 and January 2015, Selby-Fullgrabe, who lives in the Adelaide Hills, provided quotes and took deposits for the installation and removal of air-conditioning units in Adelaide and on Yorke Peninsula but failed to provide the goods and services.

The matters were escalated to Compulsory Conciliation Conferences held by Consumer and Business Services, where Selby-Fullgrabe agreed to refund the deposits, but failed to do so.

In sentencing submissions, counsel for the Commissioner for Consumer Affairs submitted there were aggravating factors that highlighted the seriousness of the offending, including Selby-Fullgrabe’s acceptance of deposits from clients, and refusal to engage with them when work was not commenced.

Mr Grasso recorded convictions on all counts against the company and Mr Selby-Fullgrabe personally. He imposed one penalty against the company of $10,000, and a separate penalty of $10,000 against Mr Selby-Fullgrabe, prosecution costs of $800, and also ordered that Mr Selby-Fullgrabe pay compensation to each of the consumers totalling $13,786.

Commissioner for Consumer Affairs, Dini Soulio, said Mr Selby-Fullgrabe’s actions were serious and that the convictions should send a significant deterrent to tradespeople who might be minded to take deposits from consumers and not follow through with the services contracted for.

To check whether a builder is licensed, visit the Consumer and Business Services website at www.cbs.sa.gov.au. To report any concerns about a builder or contractor, contact CBS on 131 882.

Read more – unlicensed air-conditioning contractor to pay