An emergency plumbing company which charged a customer for work which had not been done must pay fines and costs of nearly £6,000.

Flowline Services Limited, which now trades as Rapid-Flow Maintenance Services Ltd in Wiltshire, was convicted by Croydon magistrates last week after denying breaking the Trades Description Act.

It was fined £2,000 and ordered to pay costs of £2,862.66 and compensation of £994.75.

An engineer arrived at a Croydon home to repair a leak and said a new water tank was needed. He spent four hours fixing the problem and charged the victim £602.78.

Ten days later, the ceiling below the tank collapsed from water leaking from the tank and the customer complained to the council's trading standards service.

Trading standards manager, Steve Ruddy: “This is the second case of its type within a couple of weeks and it is worrying that this kind of practice is continuing.

“The council is determined to protect local people from unscrupulous traders and will prosecute anyone found using dishonest practices.”

The council's Builders' Charter is available on 020 8407 1310 or from Taberner House.