A motor trader has been fined almost £2,000 after selling a car that had been written off by an insurance company.
Jamie Cox, of Byron Place, Croespenmaen, was also found guilty of placing adverts in the private sales part of the Ad Trader directory without declaring he was selling cars in the course of a business, which is illegal.
At a hearing at Caerphilly Magistrates Court Cox was fined a total of £1,915 for the offences.
The court was told that on June 25 last year a customer had bought an X-reg Ford Focus from Cox for £2,400, having seen an advert in Auto Trader magazine.
In September 2008, the customer took his vehicle to a car sales garage in Blackwood to part exchange it for another.
At this point, they were told the vehicle only had a value of approximately £1,500, because it had been a Category C Insurance loss vehicle.
This means the cost of repairing the car would have been greater than what it was worth and so had been written off by an insurance company.
The customer contacted Caerphilly County Borough Council’s trading standards to make a complaint against Cox.
Trading standards investigated and found that Cox had also been advertising vehicles for sale in the private sales sections of Ad Trader and Auto Trader magazines without declaring he was selling cars commercially.
In the case of the Ford Focus, Cox had advertised the vehicle for sale correctly in the trade sales section of the magazine, but officials discovered he had incorrectly advertised cars in the past.
After the hearing trading standards and licensing manager Jacqui Morgan said: “This successful prosecution I hope will act as a warning to others of the powers that Trading Standards possess for dealing with offences such as this.
“This is our first prosecution under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 and illustrates its effectiveness in dealing with such offences.
“I would encourage any members of the public who may have suffered a similar experience to get in touch with us.”
The council’s cabinet member for the environment, Cllr Lyn Ackerman said: “I’m pleased to see such a successful result to this prosecution and trust that it will act as a warning to others that they will not get away with committing unfair and illegal practices.”