A conman builder who swindled his customers out of £220,000 has been jailed for four years.
John Miller jetted off on lavish holidays while bodged projects remained unfinished and in ruin.
The 46-year-old rogue builder swindled eight clients out of £220,000 and during one project jetted off on holidays to Las Vegas, New York, Greece and Tenerife. He also put down a £3,000 deposit for a new BMW during another project.
Miller, who had previously been convicted for disorderly behaviour at a football match, was locked up after being found guilty of fraudulent trading and money laundering.
John Miller and his wife Catherine (left and right) pictured earlier this year leaving Norwich Crown Court. Mrs Miller had previously also been charged with money laundering
Mess and rubble can be seen on the floor as the walls are covered in damp in one property (above). The court said work Miller carried out had been ‘inadequate’
Paul Pearson (pictured above) was one of the victims of Millers rogue business
One extension (pictured above) was left with missing tiles on the roof and gaps in the walls
Norwich Crown Court yesterday heard that much of the work he did was so bad it had to be redone.
Victims had to use life-savings, take out bank loans and were forced to spend £122,000 to undo the damage.
Prosecutor Alison Lambert said Miller left one granny annexe, costing £40,000, with no glass in the windows, a leak in the roof and no heating or electrics.
Another extension was left with leaking windows, no tiles on the roof and gaps in the walls. And in one case a parent was left with a new born baby in a house with no heating or hot water for weeks.
Victims of Miller’s poor work had to take out loans and use their life savings in order to fix the damage
John Miller swindled eight clients out of £220,000 for dodgy work on their homes (pictured above and unfinished room with damp near the window)
Judge Stephen Holt told Miller: ‘You were extremely good at giving excuse after excuse.
‘Your criminal behaviour has given all small building companies a bad name.’
‘You were prepared to carry on works which were inadequate and would have been a danger, in particular of a roof collapse.’
In one case Miller fixed an extension to a house using shelf joints and Judge Holt said that the case showed the distress which had been forced upon the victims.
One of the properties (pictured left) which John Miller had been working on looked as though it was falling apart while walls in other (right) were left unbuilt
Incomplete pipe work and wiring can be seen in one of the properties which John Miller had been paid to work on. Norwich Crown Court said the builder had tried to blame others for his work
‘You have shown no genuine remorse,’ Judge Holt added.
‘You blame others but you alone are the dishonest one. This case has demonstrated the pain and suffering your criminal behaviour has brought to your victims and their families.’
Sophie Leney, Head of Norfolk County Council Trading Standards, said: ‘We first had complaints relating to Mr Miller in 2015.
‘As more reports came to us it painted a clear picture of a trader who was regularly carrying out work that fell far short of acceptable standards. Work often ran months over schedule and in many cases was never completed at all.’
A hole in the ceiling of one of the properties (pictured above). Trading Standards said they first had complaints about Miller in 2015
Norwich Crown Court (stock image above) heard from Miller’s previous clients as well as Trading Standards
Paul Pearson who paid Miller £40,000 to build a granny annexe said his wife was forced on to antidepressants to deal with the stress.
Customer Colin Yaxley who paid Miller £30,000 said he sobbed uncontrollably in front of his child because of the stress of the project.
Another client, Hayley Dyball, accused Miller of ‘constantly lying without conscious’.
Amy Cranmer, who gave Miller £30,000 to extend her home in Norfolk, said: ‘He is an arrogant man. It has had a massive financial impact on us up to today.’
In mitigation, Miller’s barrister Mark Tomassi said the builder ‘over extended’ himself.
Mr Tomassi described the father-of-three, who ran the companies HLD Construction Ltd and JGM Construction Services Ltd, as a ‘caring and decent man’.
He added: ‘He became blind to what he was doing having got himself in deep water.’
It today emerged that Miller, of Three Mile Lane, Costessey, was convicted of disorder before a Norwich City football match in 2010.
He was among Canaries fans who abused Leeds United fans outside Carrow Road – singing: ‘We hate Leeds scum’ and Galatasaray, the name of the Turkish team Leeds played in the semi-final of the Uefa Cup in 2000 when two fans were stabbed to death.
Miller was found guilty of public disorder and banned from football for three years.