Search

“Despicable” Beckton sham charity made profit from donations

15:37 21 January 2013

A judge described a sham charity collection business as “despicable” for using their greed to take advantage of the public’s generosity.

Thedropsofhelp Ltd, registered at Chichester Close, Beckton, was ordered into liquidation in the High Court for falsely claiming to be a not-for-profit organisation collecting clothes and other items for the needy.

But an investigation by The Insolvency Service and Trading Standards found none of the money was given to charity - in fact, the collection bags were shipped abroad and sold at a profit.

Thedropsofhelp Ltd delivered bags to households with a picture of a dishevelled young girl biting her nails next to the statement: “The drops of help in your hands will support the poor families, orphans, and asylums. Help them today, not tomorrow...”

The company was run by Vaidotas Puzas and his wife Asta Puziene who stated their average turnover was around 15 tonnes of clothes per month.

They pleaded guilty to 10 charges under the Consumer Protection From Unfair Trading Regulations at Dartford Magistrates Court on October 23 before their case was committed to Maidstone Crown Court on December 21 for sentencing due to the “highly organised and misleading” nature of the scam.

After calling their actions “despicable”, His Honour Judge Griffiths-Jones QC gave Puzas a two year sentence suspended for two years, 250 hours of community service, and a £1,000 fine.

Puziene received 150 hours of community service for her role and the company was fined £10,000 plus £2,000 prosecution costs.

Neither of the defendents can act as director of a company for five years.

Following the court’s decision, Chris Mayhew, company investigations supervisor, said: “This company took shameful advantage of the public’s charity thereby damaging genuine charities by taking items that may otherwise have been donated to them and by harming people’s faith in giving altogether.”

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 20:00
Flowers placed by the families of those killed in the Edgware Road underground station terrorist bombing on July 7th.

A decade ago, 52 people were killed in a terrorist attack on London’s transport network.

Newham
Yesterday, 18:00
Danielle Russell

A woman and two teenagers have been jailed over the death of a former Newham student.

Brampton Manor Academy
Yesterday, 18:00
Front page of the Newham Recorder after the terrorist attack

Twenty-four hours after winning the chance to showcase Newham to the world we all came shuddering back down to earth.

London
Yesterday, 16:46
A Police officer lays flowers near the scene of the bus explosion in Tavistock Square. Picture: Steve Parsons/PA Archive

Ten years ago today, 52 people were killed in the 7/7 London bombings.

Stephen Timms

Most read news

Competitions

Good times with Greenall's!

Good times with Greenall’s, a Great British gin sponsors Great British racing.

Read more
Escape to the picturesque sights of Cornwall

Summer is finally here, and what is the number one holiday location in the UK during the warmer months? Cornwall, of course!

Read more

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder