TWO New South Wales tradies accused of ripping off elderly customers have been ordered by Queensland’s Supreme Court to stop advertising their business across the state.
Fridge magnets (pictured) promoting discounted electrical and plumbing services for seniors and pensioners were distributed to Redlands homes, including at Ormiston and Cleveland in November.
One of the magnets – shaped as a tap – lists a New South Wales contractor licence number registered to Belal Dassouki, 33.
In Queensland, it is an offence to advertise for licensed work without a Queensland Building and Construction Commission licence.
QBCC Commissioner Brett Bassett said the commission had sought an injunction after being inundated with reports of people receiving the distinctive yellow magnets.
“The NSW-based company is under investigation by the NSW Office of Fair Trading and it has been accused of ripping off elderly customers,” he said.
“It is unlicensed in Queensland and was flouting the law with the spam magnet mail out.”
Mr Bassett said investigators, who worked closely with Australia Post, had seized a further 5000 magnets that were due to be distributed throughout Queensland.
“Safety for all Queenlanders is of the utmost importance and advertising for plumbing work must be done by an appropriately licensed contractor,” he said.
A QBCC spokesperson said Plumbing Detectives and its directors, Mr Dassouki and Mahmoud Sayadi, were ordered to stop issuing the magnets until they were licensed in Queensland.
“In addition, Serving You Pty Ltd and Joel Deuis have been ordered by consent to stop issuing magnets on their behalf,” the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson said the Supreme Court’s orders to stop the mass mail-out of illegal fridge magnets were unprecedented.
To check if a plumber is appropriately licensed, visit qbcc.qld.gov.au.