A FRAUDSTER who charged people for gardening work he never carried out has been ordered to repay the money back.

Cranhill man James Adair scammed a total of £8891 from five different victims between February 26, 2020, and October 19, 2020.

The 38-year-old appeared at Glasgow Sheriff Court for sentencing last week.

Prosecutor Derek Buchanan said: “The accused used an email address which included the words Glasgow Landscaping.

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“He offered to carry out work. Various complainers made payment and the accused simply did not appear to carry out the work.

“He didn’t respond to requests from the complainers. They made reports to police and the accused was subsequently arrested in relation.”

The court heard that none of the money has been repaid.

One woman, from Carntyne, who was scammed out of £2145 by Adair, told the prosecutor the incident has had a significant impact on her life and made her feel vulnerable and scared.

A man from Bearsden was scammed £4600 from Adair, meanwhile, a Robroyston woman handed over £1000.

He also took £710 from a man in Lesmahagow, and £436 from a man in Lenzie.

Sheriff Patricia Pryce told Adair’s solicitor: “I’m very concerned about the course of conduct over an extensive period of time. He’s got a record but it’s not analogous. I understand he’s obtained new employment.”

The lawyer replied: “Just this week he has secured full-time employment. He has wanted for some time to make repayment, but he has been subject to bail conditions not to contact the complainers.

“He was told not to contact any of them.”

Sheriff Pryce said: “He could have put the money into a different bank account and made payment today.

“He’s held onto these people’s money, and I’m sure some will be elderly. You heard the comment from one complainer – she feels scared and vulnerable.

“He was quick enough to take their money but he’s not so quick to repay it.”

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Sentencing was deferred for six months.

Sheriff Pryce told Adair: “This offence meets custody. You seem to suggest for some people this wouldn’t have an impact because they’re rich.

“You’ve left a woman feeling vulnerable and scared in her own home. I will allow you the opportunity to make repayment and I expect a substantial amount of this to be paid off when you’re back.

“If you don’t make repayment then all options remain open, and these include custody.”

Adair will return to court in January.