Cowboy builders jailed

Tomney family
Tomney family
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A FATHER and his twin sons were jailed after taking thousands of pounds from the elderly and vulnerable in return for shoddy building work.

Francis Tomney, Francis Tomney Jnr and Thomas Tomney targeted addresses in Blackpool, Lytham, Thornton, Fleetwood, Preesall and Knott End as well as homes in Manchester and Hertfordshire where they offered to carry out work on driveways for extortionate amounts of money.

In one shocking case a pensioner was made to hand over £31,000 for work the Tomneys claimed they had done at her Blackpool home.

One 80-year-old victim from Stockport was told chemical sealant was being poured on to his driveway when in fact they used milk.

The gang from Cleveleys, even had the cheek to film themselves as they wanted it to act as a promotional video to other unsuspecting customers and also told the pensioner to keep cats away as they might get poisoned by the liquid.

Sentencing the trio at Preston Crown Court, Judge Michael Byrne said: “I am satisfied that on each occasion of these transactions they saw the customer as an opportunity to make money but the practices used to further this aim amounted to dishonest and fraudulent conduct in each case.”

Francis Tomney Snr, 55, was jailed for five-and-a-half years, Francis Tomney Jnr, 21, for five years and Thomas Tomney, 21, was imprisoned for four-and-a-half years after they they all admitted conspiracy to commit fraud.

All three from Dorset Avenue pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.

A fourth man, cousin Brian Tomney, 29, of Rudman Drive, Salford, was jailed for 15 months for fraud and cheating the public revenue.