A man has been arrested and charged for allegedly taking €20,000 to carry out work on a building and then failing to do so.
Gardaí confirmed that a man in his 40s had been arrested in relation to the theft in the Cloyne area of Co Cork more than three years ago.
It said in a statement that in March 2016 the alleged injured party handed over €20,000 to the suspect to carry out building work.
Gardaí said that only minimal work was completed at a house in Cloyne and the money was not returned to the owner.
In April 2018, a complaint was made to An Garda Síochána in Midleton and following an investigation, a man was arrested on June 17 last.
He was brought to Midleton Garda Station and was detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984 and has since been charged and is due to appear before the courts at a later date.
The development prompted gardaí to remind householders of the need to satisfy themselves about the credibility of anyone offering to carry out works or selling goods, particularly in the case of cold callers.
Crime prevention officer John Kelly, based in Fermoy in Co Cork, said: “If someone calls to your door offering you professional trade services or selling goods and you are worried they are not bona fide, tell the caller that you never deal with people who ‘cold call’ to your door.
“Ask for a brochure or documentation so you can carry out checks and verify their credibility. This should include a contact number and a VAT registered number.
“Be careful of documentation that only displays mobile contact numbers or incomplete addresses. Check with friends and neighbours to see if they have used the company to carry out any work. If you are satisfied that the company or individual(s) are credible and you want to make a purchase, ask for an itemised written quotation for the exact goods or services being offered.
“Never rely on the accuracy of the information, always verify the information yourself. Always seek comparable estimates for services. Never engage a person who insists on a cash payment as it is untraceable.”
In a separate incident earlier this year gardaí in Bantry investigated an incident where suspects cold called to an elderly lady’s home, uninvited, and allegedly made her feel pressurised into paying an extortionate price for 12 chainsaws, 11 generators, seven power washers and assorted tools which she had no use for and did not want.