Gold Coasters fined for pocketing money, failing to deliver services

Two Gold Coasters have been fined thousands of dollars for allegedly ripping off local residents in two separate incidents.

Matthew Joshua Gregory, a local floorer, has been ordered to pay $16,000 for allegedly leaving a Varsity Lakes home owner without their new floor.

The Southport Magistrates Court heard that in February this year, Mr Gregory had agreed to remove the old tiles from the home and install a new timber floor at a cost of $10,000.


According to The Office of Fair Trading, Mr Gregory never returned to finish the work and the home owner was left without a complete floor, despite paying a $6000 deposit.

Mr Gregory was found guilty of failing to supply goods and services to a consumer within a reasonable time.

He was fined $10,000 and ordered to pay $6,000 in compensation to the consumer, with no conviction recorded.

In another case, a Burleigh Waters business trainer was taken to court by the Office of Fair Trading for accepting payment for training, but failing to provide it.

Helen Woods, also known as Helen Liddle and Helen Parkinson, director of the National Institute of Management and Training, has been fined $15,000 in the Gold Coast Magistrates Court.

According to the OFT, Ms Woods was paid $495 for a management course to be delivered in October last year, however the customer was sent an email advising that the course had to be rescheduled to November due to staffing issues.

“The course failed to go ahead on the rescheduled date,” the OFT said.

The court heard it was not the first time the OFT had prosecuted this trader.

“In 2016, Ms Woods, then trading as H. Woods and Associates, was found guilty of eight counts of breaching the Australian Consumer Law and ordered to pay more than $18,000 in fines and restitution,” the OFT said.

Fair Trading Executive Director Brian Bauer said Gold Coasters expected to receive the services they paid for.

“Businesses need to be confident that they can provide the service before they accept payment from consumers,” Mr Bauer said.

“The OFT does not tolerate this type of behaviour and will continue to act to protect the rights of Queensland consumers who are left out of pocket in this way.”