Mark Rhind secures acquittal in Trading Standards Prosecution

February 13, 2017

Mark Rhind from Exchange Chambers, instructed by Farleys Solicitors, has secured an acquittal for his client in a Trading Standards prosecution.

Trading Standards Scambusters team carried out a major investigation in to Thermal Seal, a company selling roofing repairs and rigid foam system. Warrants were executed in March 2014.

Thermal Seal was a new company but based on an existing company model. Its aim was to sell a new type foam insulation system to a niche market of homeowners throughout the country. The sale of the product involved initial telesales contact calls, property surveys and the work ultimately being carried out by an experienced contractor. The 3 directors of the company were charged with conspiracy to defraud, money laundering and associated consumer protection regulations concerned with the mis-selling of the product to what the prosecution described as vulnerable people. The building contractor for the firm was later charged with the conspiracy. Ultimately each defendant was separately represented.

It was some time before the matter came to trial in October 2016. The defence team uncovered errors in the prosecution case and were able to challenge a large amount of the prosecution case prior to trial which resulted in a number of allegations being discontinued.

Dedicated defence work revealed a whole host of documentation which had not been considered by the prosecution and was able to be presented at trial. Insurers were spoken to on behalf of the defence and that evidence also went before the jury. Despite the prosecution calling 40 witnesses and the trial taking 56 days, the jury took just 45 minutes to decide to acquit all 4 defendants.

Bridgette Hibbert, associate partner at Farleys Solicitors said:

“This defendant was adamant that there had been no wrong doing and was personally devastated by the allegations. Additionally Trading standards obtained restraint orders, meaning defendants could not deal with their assets, we were therefore involved in the financial issues at an early stage and assisted in securing income and banking ability for the defendant and his family.”

Added Bridgette:

“Mark Rhind of Exchange Chambers presented a well prepared case and we achieved an excellent result.”

David Bentley from Exchange Chambers also successfully secured an acquittal for another one of the defendants in the case.