He invoiced us for building works that hadnt been undertaken (but told us they were), and failed to deduct from a £20k advance deposit paid.
He has claimed to the police it was "admin errors" or that he was on the understanding that his employees had told him the work was done so he invoiced it, but we're sure he knew of it, as we was on site every day.
It sounds stupid that we'd pay for works that werent undertaken, but they were ground works and we were away on business, then he filled poured a concrete floor so we/building regs couldnt inspect.
We have managed to reluctantly get the police involved and have interviewed him, but they are reluctant, they want to pass it off to us a civil claim, but we know that if/once he knows he's blagged his way through the police, he'll think he's invincable and we have no chance of even hearing from him again. The police tried to pass it off to trading standards too (as there's also a lot of work that has been done wrong), but they said they only deal with vulnerable people & werent interested.
He's told the police it was all genuine mistakes he will settle it through solicitors, but we've not heard from him for 6 weeks (not even to an email asking if he had any intention of replying, and they've had no response to things he promised he woudl send them either. We think he's waiting to see if he'll actually get charged or not.....hence I really need to persuade the police it's fraud and to charge him, otherwise I will loose it all.
So our letters asking for it to be returned and his lack of response is enough to prove he's no intention of returning it?
With there being no response, is there a certain time delay we need to wait? He has previously made an offer for 1/3 of the money back, but it was 6 months ago, which we said isnt enough.
If we make a country court claim though, it will cost a huge amount in solicitors fees, and if it's against the company he will just wind the company up? With it being a limited company, it's difficult to take the claim against him personally,
We've already spent £12k in solicitors fees, but there comes a point where we need to stop sending good money after bad, which would would all be wasted if he winds the company up.
Hence I really need to pursue through the police.
If we cant get a positive refusal, how long is "an extended period" for it to be clear that he's refusing?
Yes I am involving the police again, they are coming tonight so that I can sort out the apropriate evidence to dispute his claims in the 2 hour interview he had (unfortunately it is rather complex, I've tried to simplify it here!)......I really need to persuade them to charge him to give him the momentum to pay up to avoid charges, but they are reluctant to (they say they have to apply to the crown court and they have to prove it's in the public interest & there's a good chance of success), which is a bit subjective, and I can imagine the crown court trying to evade responsibility too!
It appears the police need things very clear cut, hence why I'm trying to simplify the matter somewhat.