Car salesman failed to tell buyer Audi was a ‘write off’, court hears

Crown Court
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A second-hand car salesman has been ordered to pay over £1,500 after admitting a number of offences – including selling a car with a false service history and failing to tell a buyer that a vehicle had been written off.

Derbyshire County Council’s trading standards team brought the prosecution against Brian Cliff, 44, who formerly traded as Northern 4x4 from Providence Street, Rotherham, following complaints from two Derbyshire buyers.

Appearing at Rotherham Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, May 25 Cliff pleaded guilty to three charges under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 and one charge under the Road Traffic Act 1988.

The charges related to two sales made by Cliff in October 2015

In the first sale, Cliff sold an Audi A2 to a buyer from Bolsover, which included falsifying the service history, failing to tell the buyer that the car was a Category D write-off. Category D write offs can be repaired and re-sold as long as the customer is told about the vehicle’s history.

In the second, he sold a Fiat Punto to a buyer from Dronfield Woodhouse, which included the suspension wishbone collapsing two months after it was being sold.

Cliff was ordered to pay £500 in compensation to the buyer of Audi and £659 to the buyer of the Fiat. He was also ordered to pay £400 towards Derbyshire County Council’s costs, a £15 victim surcharge and handed a 12 month conditional discharge.

Councillor Dave Allen, Derbyshire County Council cabinet member for health and communities, said: “Both of these buyers bought the cars in good faith but were left out of pocket.

“The Fiat Punto was in such a bad state, its suspension collapsed while the buyer’s son was driving it. Fortunately, he was on a quiet road at the time and not on a motorway, otherwise the consequences could have been very serious.”