Cold and calculating’ family of rogue traders who held pensioners ‘ransom’ in £398,000 scam are jailed – as police reveal dramatic moment they stormed gang’s Cheshire home
- Madeline Lovell, 41, Andrew Lovell, 43, and Kevin Brown, 61, all pled guilty to defrauding elderly residents
A family of ‘cold and calculating’ rogue traders, who held pensioners ‘ransom’, have been jailed after scamming their victims out of almost £400,000.
Couple Madeline Lovell, 41, and Andrew Lovell, 43, had their Cheshire home raided by police after scamming elderly residents for a total of £398,490.
Kevin Brown, 61, who is from Mold, North Wales, was also jailed for his part in the defrauding of the pensioners.
Andrew Lovell was jailed for four years and six months, Madeline Lovell was jailed for 27 months, whilst Brown was jailed for 18 months.
Their crime included persuading their victims that work was required on their home, and in most cases no work was needed. Once the victims agreed for the work to take place on their home, it was then completed to an extremely poor standard and the pricing of the work was extortionate.
Andrew Lovell (left) from Chester pleaded guilty to nine counts of fraud by false representation and money laundering, he was sentenced to four years six months
Madeline Lovell, (right, entering the van) of the same address pleaded guilty to three counts fraud by false representation and money laundering. She was sentenced to 27 months
The defendants were arrested in raids at their home addresses following an extensive investigation by the ECU and subsequently charged
DC Gareth Yates from the Economic Crime Unit said: ‘These elderly residents were in essence held to ransom by these cold and calculating defendants. They were made to feel they had no option but to pay, for often shoddy work, at highly inflated prices.
‘The Economic Crime Unit was determined to catch the offenders who were preying on members of the community, who were often having to break into their life savings to pay these individuals off.
‘They knew they’d been defrauded, but were unable to fight back, they felt powerless, frustrated, and embarrassed.
The trio scammed pensioners for a total of £398,490 by persuading their victims that work was required on their home, and in most cases no work was needed
Once the victims agreed for the work to take place on their home, it was then completed to an extremely poor standard and the pricing of the work was extortionate
‘They were made to feel unsafe in their own home and left in fear of what would happen if they didn’t pay.’
Detectives from Cheshire Constabulary’s Economic Crime Unit (ECU) began investigating reports of rogue traders operating in the Cheshire and Merseyside areas in 2022.
A detailed investigation was carried out by the Economic Crime which utilised an array of police tactics including forensic analysis of financial, telecom and ANPR data to link these suspects to the crimes they had committed.
An independent chartered surveyor was brought in to detail the losses to each victim in his separate reports. He noted that the work was extremely poor and in some case wasn’t required.
All three pled guilty to the crime and appeared at Chester Crown Court on June, 27 to be sentenced.
Andrew Lovell pleaded guilty to nine counts of fraud by false representation and money laundering. Madeline Lovell pleaded guilty to three counts of fraud by false representation and money laundering. Whilst, Brown pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud by false representation and money laundering.
DC Yates said: ‘Our dedicated team will stop at nothing to root out those who commit fraud especially against our most vulnerable members of our society. We will continue to disrupt their illegal activities and protect our communities by putting these criminals behind bars.’