Man took cash from Sunderland woman after answering Facebook post for house clearance work he never carried out
A man who took £190 from an unsuspecting Sunderland woman after answering a Facebook post for house clearance work that he never undertook has been hit in the pocket.
Kyle Thompson, 27, agreed to move the woman’s goods after responding to a post on the social media site requesting help.
His quote price was agreed and Thompson, of Tower Street, Hendon, Sunderland, was given the cash up front, magistrates in South Tyneside heard.
But he failed to turn up to do the job on Thursday, December 9 - and his victim contacted police, prosecutor Paul Anderson said.
Mr Anderson added: “The lady enlisted the help of a neighbour to get some property taken from her home because she was moving.
“The neighbour put a post on Facebook and Mr Thompson responds and says he will do the work on December 9, for a fee of £190.
“He asks for a deposit of £50, which was given by the woman who had made the post and reimbursed by her friend.
“A day later, he asked for another £40 because he needed a van.
“On December 7, he asked for a further £20 and in total, £190 was given over four days.
“You can possibly guess what’s coming. He doesn’t turn up on December 9, and he is never heard from.
“The police got involved and the defendant was duly arrested. He is interviewed and accepts responsibility.
“He said that his van had broken down on the 9th and he couldn’t do the work and said he didn’t refund the money.
“He said he had intended to complete the work and was frank enough to say that when things went wrong, he had no intention of carrying out the work.”
Thompson pleaded guilty to a charge of theft between Saturday, December 4 and Tuesday, December 7.
The court heard he was doing well on an existing 18-month community order imposed for another offence last year.
Magistrates revoked Thompson’s community order and replaced it with one of nine months and consisting of 14 rehabilitation days.
It also has a requirement of an eight-week, 7pm to 7am electronically monitored curfew.
Thompson must pay £85 court costs and an £85 victim surcharge.