A BOROUGH rogue trader has admitted selling death trap cars to unsuspecting motorists.
Geoff Badlan, who sold low cost cars from Himley Value Centre in Himley Road and Pensnett High Street, misled members of the public with false Auto Trader adverts, selling them cars which were far from roadworthy.
Dudley Magistrates Court heard how Badlan, aged 39, was the “most complained about motor trader in the Dudley Borough” after Trading Standards received 36 complaints from angry customers between April 2011 and December 2012 and launched an investigation alongside Vehicle and Operator Services Agency ( VOSA) and the police.
Tim Holder, prosecuting on behalf of Dudley Council, told the court how many of the vehicles did not match up with the information in the motor trade magazine including the number of previous owners, service history and different mileage – with one car which was advertised as having 42,000 miles on the clock was actually found to have done more than 200,000.
Mr Holder said: “One buyer came from Derby to part exchange his car after seeing a vehicle in Auto Trader. He found some issues and went to speak with Mr Badlan who reassured him if anything is found wrong it would be righted. The car had no service history or documents, despite what the advert said.
“He drove the vehicle off the forecourt and within five minutes he experienced problems, the passenger seat shot forward and the brakes weren’t working properly. When he went back to see Mr Badlan he was told the deal had been done and that was it.”
And in September 2012, a woman who went to purchase a car to transport her children, found it again failed to resemble the advert. Not only did it have different mileage and number of owners, it also had a loose battery, no windscreen wipers and no reverse gear.
Badlan, who has recently moved from the area to Hall Road, Norwich, pleaded guilty to six offences under the Road Traffic Offenders Act, 16 offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations and two offences under the Company Act.
He is set to appear at Wolverhampton Crown Court on February 13 at 10am for sentencing after magistrates ruled he needed a greater punishment than they were able to give.
Badlan was granted unconditional bail after reassuring magistrates he is not selling cars in East Anglia.