Niagara Gazette

Crime

June 28, 2013

Transit Road business owner reports possible scam in Lockport

The owner of a business on the 6600 block of Transit Road reported to Niagara County Sheriff's deputies that he believes he was scammed by a California man who performed paving work at the business.

The owner said he was approached by a man on Monday who introduced himself as a local contractor and offered his paving services. The two agreed on a deal involving the man paving certain area's of the business' parking lot for $2.50 per square foot. The owner said he never asked the man for his business license or proof of insurance. The man also never provided a total cost estimate before starting the work. The owner said he directed the man to fix about 500 square feet of parking lot for a total cost between $1,000 and $2,000.

The man paved the areas on Tuesday and Wednesday and when he was finished, requested the owner pay $27,867.50. The owner said he was shocked by the total but paid it. Afterward, the man provided the owner with an invoice showing a total of $2,786.75 but the owner told the deputy be paid $27,867.50 and the check had been cashed.

The owner said the man called back Thursday asking if there was more paving he could do. This prompted the business owner to perform a Google search on the man and found that someone of the same name was scamming people in California.

According to the California Department of Consumer Affairs website, the man is a transient paving contractor who scams people on jobs. 

Sheriff's detectives had California police forward a picture of the man but the business owner did not recognize him as the man he dealt with.

Sheriff's detectives are investigating the matter.

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