REO Marketing bosses jailed over illegal sales tactics
Two bosses of a Derbyshire mobility firm have been jailed for using illegal sales methods on elderly customers.
Former sales manager of REO Marketing Limited Geoffrey Moore, 48, pleaded guilty to nine charges of using unfair and aggressive sales methods.
At Derby Crown Court, ex-director Rodney Stone, 63, of North Wingfield, admitted 15 similar charges.
Moore, of Wingerworth, was sentenced to a total of four years. Stone received a total of three.
Passing sentence at Derby Crown Court on Tuesday, the judge told Moore, of Nethermoor Road, and Stone, of Bamford Avenue, they should both be ashamed of themselves.
REO Marketing Limited sold scooters, stairlifts, beds, and wheelchairs across England.
The Chesterfield-based company was officially wound up earlier this year.
'Tip of iceberg'
Derbyshire County Council trading standards officers began investigating the firm after receiving 37 complaints between February and October 2010.
It said it was probably just the tip of the iceberg.
The authority said it was one of the largest ever investigations of its kind in the county.
After the hearing, Graham Morgan, from Derbyshire trading standards, said: "The company had used high pressure sales tactics on the elderly to get them to buy mobility equipment.
"It was quite a big enterprise that had a turnover, in the year it was operating, of about £2.3m."
Trading standards said it had received complaints about the company from as far away as Plymouth and Cumbria.
Cases against two other employees are continuing.