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14 February 2015, 08:14 | Updated: 14 February 2015, 08:19
Two serial rogue builders who defrauded elderly homeowners in Cornwall out of thousands of pounds for shoddy or non-existent work have been jailed.
48 year old Johnny Jones and 51 year old Nelson Richards inflated their prices, quoted for unnecessary work, carried out poor quality repairs or just did not bother at all.
The pair targeted mainly elderly victims and carried out a spate of frauds between March 2012 and August 2014 across Cornwall.
Jones pleaded guilty to a charge of participating in a fraudulent business and was sentenced to three-and-a-half-years. Richards pleaded guilty to two charges of fraud by abuse of position and a single charge of fraud abd was also sentenced for a further fraud committed in September 2013 involving a woman in her 80s. He was jailed for five years.
The judge said that Jones was a ``genuine builder'' and that his business had not been set up for the ``purposes of fraud''. ``However, on a number of occasions when you have come into contact with the elderly you have seen them as an easy touch,'' he said.
``I take the view that Mr Richards is a professional conman who targets the vulnerable in a particularly unpleasant way.''