A BERKSHIRE dealer has been jailed for three years after being found guilty of fraud related to his used car business.
Issa Abuissa, 47, of Manchester Road, Reading, had operated a used car business under various names, including Binfield Trade Cars, Budget Trade Cars, Budget Car Sales, Compare Trade Cars and Crown Auto Motors from his premises in Moor Lane, Binfield.
The sentencing at Reading Crown Court, pictured, followed a lengthy, complex investigation by the Public Protection Partnership (PPP) Trading Standards Service working with the PPP Joint Case Management Unit, prosecuted by Wokingham Borough Council’s legal team.
The probe was launched when Trading Standards received complaints from the public who felt they had been misled by Abuissa, said the council.
After a two-week trial, the jury found Abuissa guilty of four counts of supplying an article for use in fraud, after selling customers used cars with altered service books suggesting the cars had been serviced when they hadn’t been, and two counts of possession of an article for use in fraud, where he had two false stamps used in service books, four altered service books and 13 blank warranty booklets.
He was also found guilty of seven charges of dishonestly making false representations to customers who bought used cars from him. These false claims amounted to telling customers the cars had a full service history when they didn’t, that the car had the benefit of a WMS Group warranty when he didn’t intend registering the warranty applications, and in one instance falsely stating the car was in excellent condition.
Abuissa was sentenced to 36 months in custody after the jury heard evidence from 14 members of the public who had bought used cars from him.
After the case, Wokingham borough councillor Norman Jorgensen, chairman of the joint public protection committee, said: ‘The investigation into the activities of Mr Abuissa revealed a wide range of dishonesty and a trail of victims.
‘This was a complicated case that resulted in a two-week trial. The level of criminality is demonstrated by the sentence, which the committee hopes will send a clear message to anyone else thinking of engaging in this activity.’
Main picture: Martin Halfpenny/PA Archive/PA Images
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