Car dealer jailed for conning customers out of £200,000

A car dealer has been jailed for two years after being found guilty of conning customers out of £208,000.

Steve Meade contacted people selling their cars on various websites and convinced them to sell their vehicles through his company, Surrey Prestige Cars Ltd. However, having left the sale in his hands, many customers never received the full amount owed for the sale of the car, with Mr Meade pocketing hundreds of thousands of pounds in the process.

Fraudulent trading like this will not only land you in hot water with the police, but it will also make it virtually impossible for the convicted person to ever work in the motor trade industry again. For example, obtaining the necessary road risks insurance or motor trade insurance policy will be extremely difficult, with insurers reluctant to offer policies to an individual with a criminal record.

According to This Is Local London, some of the high end cars entrusted to Mr Meade to sell included Maseratis, Mercedes and BMWs.

The activity took place between 11 September 2009 and 12 April 2010. The 51-year-old was jailed at Guildford Crown Court last week after a trial took place in March.

Carley Saint James, from Staines CID specialist fraud department, said: "This scam left the victims thousands of pounds out of pocket, which in itself has caused irreparable damage to the lives of some.

"They have had to go through the indignity of having debt collectors call at the house because the finance on the car has not been paid, have had their credit history questioned, having to borrow more money to purchase another car or even having to sell the family home.

"I can only hope that it will be of some comfort to them that justice has now been served in that Meade is now beginning his prison sentence."