A ROGUE builder has been sentenced to 19 months in prison after taking thousands of pounds from victims and leaving properties uninhabitable or in a dangerous condition.

Derek Alan Bradshaw, 55, who has previous convictions for similar crimes, operated from addresses in Albert Street, Bolton and Cavendish Street, Darwen.

Bradshaw pleaded guilty to three counts of fraudulent trading following prosecution by Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council Trading Standards. One offence was even committed whilst he was on bail awaiting trial for similar offences.

Preston Crown Court heard that he took payments from two victims, totalling £38,000, but then failed to complete the work to a shop in Darwen and family’s home which was left uninhabitable.

Recorder Mukhtar Hussain QC, told Bradshaw: “The family say you destroyed their present and their future.” Bradshaw also failed to pay £1,500 to a roofer he had employed as a sub-contractor.

Speaking after the sentencing, Cllr Jim Smith, executive member for environment, said: “These fraudulent acts have had deep and devastating impacts on those innocent people he preyed on. I hope this prosecution goes someway to helping the victims know that he hasn’t got away lightly with what he has done.”

Bradshaw was previously prosecuted by Blackburn with Darwen Trading Standards in 2015 and was jailed for 27 months for fraudulent trading and trading whilst insolvent.