Two men who pocketed thousands of pounds duping unsuspecting job seekers into applying for jobs that did not exist have today been banned from running or being involved in running an employment agency for seven years.
The Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate (EAS), which is part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, brought legal proceedings against Mr Ian Johnson and Mr Ronald Clark and a decision was made at an Employment Tribunal hearing held this morning to ban them for a period of seven years with immediate effect.
The hearing heard how the Newcastle based pair had placed job advertisements in the national press, on websites and Jobcentres. None of the posts advertised existed and applicants were tricked into ringing expensive premium rate numbers and charged £25 for a careers pack and administration fees. The pair generated £200,000 from their operation.
“Looking for a job is stressful enough so the last thing people need is to have their time and effort wasted in this way. It is totally unacceptable behaviour and upsetting for those who have lost money.
“I am delighted that these men have been given seven year ban. Today’s ruling shows we will take the strongest form of action and should serve as a warning to anyone who thinks they can mislead people in this way.
“A well run private recruitment sector plays an important role in ensuring that the UK’s labour market works effectively. It is essential that employment agencies operate within the law.”
The pair did not contest today’s ruling.