The director of a Gatwick ‘meet and greet’ parking company has been sentenced to 14 months in prison and disqualified from being a director for four years following an investigation by West Sussex Trading Standards.
Asad Bashir Malik (Jura Close, Crawley, West Sussex) and his company London Parking Gatwick Ltd, which was turning over £.1.4 million, were found guilty at Brighton Crown Court of misleading customers.
Proceeds of Crime Act proceedings are still pending.
The company said on its website that all cars left with them would be parked in a secure compound.
But in 2016 reports to West Sussex Trading Standards claimed that over 1,000 vehicles were being parked in a field in Bonnetts Lane, West Sussex.
Trading Standards officers visited two fields, Bonnetts Lane and Keepers Knight, in July 2016 and confirmed that London Parking Gatwick Ltd was using these to park its customer’s vehicles.
Some of the vehicles had been left unlocked with their windows open and keys on the windscreen. Some of the vehicles were damaged and others had been issued with parking tickets. The investigation also revealed fake customer reviews on the company’s website.
Officers contacted the customers and established that they had been misled by claims on the website.