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Scammed while trying to renovate two commercial residences

Hired contractor to renovate two former residences to be used for professional office space. Accepted over $68,000. Provided job cost less than competitors to win job then increased costs as time passed. Produced shoddy workmanship with inferior, mismatched, damaged, discounted and possibly trash-picked materials, while attempting to conceal from owner and still charge full price. Incompetent work involving a first floor support joist caused municipality to issue a “Stop Work Order” at the job site, which caused a delay in securing a tenant. Requested additional time to complete jobs and made excuses, while actually working new jobs. Admitted to leaving job site to gamble and drink at horserace track. In other cases, pursued bankruptcy when confronted by owners in similar situations. In this case, contacted same bankruptcy attorney, but was not successful. Changed name of his business to different names to continue working after being challenged by owners. Used letterhead notepad stationary from the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Consumer Protection, without affiliation or authorization, to infer credibility with owner and municipal building inspector. Falsely said he was a personal friend of former Attorney General. (Obtained notepad stationary at a routine, open to the public, community meeting). Although he said he would do so, did not post self-advertisement sign on front lawn to avoid detection by municipality where same conduct was committed in the past. Although he said he would do so, continually failed to and made excuses for not obtaining a municipal remodeling permit to avoid detection by municipality. Over 100 pages of evidentiary information were presented to the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Consumer Protection, for prosecution, which produced a civil lawsuit against him for deceptive business practices, including fraud and theft (Google). Admitted to his illegal contracting conduct and owing $42,000 to owner, then retracting admission, then admitting guilt again during court motions while “playing” the legal system that he knows so well. Then asked the Attorney General’s office to conflict itself and represent him as it was prosecuting him because he did not want to pay for an attorney. Although owed many owners restitution, purchased a new pick-up truck, ladder rack and storage box for pick-up bed. Over 6 years since incidents occurred and he has only repaid $1,700 out of admitted $42,000. Some of his proposal and business advertisement statements include “We list a long list of skills too long to list,” “Your first step to a successful project with high profile quality craftsmanship,” As an alleged professional general contractor, delivered telephone books to homes and, without authorization, inserted his homemade flyer in each telephone book seeking gutter cleaning jobs.

Advice:
Ensure that the contractor registered with the local municipality pursuant to the new Pennsylvania law. It is very possible that this case helped support the new law.

Zip Code:19001