Trading Standards officers from West Sussex County Council have helped to prosecute a man caught mis-selling memory cards and USB drives on eBay.
A county council spokesman said Amish Patel, 30, formerly Wakehurst Drive, Southgate, was convicted of five counts of making false claims about the storage capacity of USB sticks and memory cards that he was selling through the internet auction site.
He was sentenced at Lewes Crown Court on Friday (July 18) and ordered to repay the £31,062.07 he made from the sales.
He also received a 10-month suspended jail sentence for each charge, was ordered to carry out 120 hours of community service, and also has to pay his victims £100 and full court costs of £5,370.
The judge ordered the profit he made from the crime be repaid within 28 days under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Trading Standards officers from West Sussex County Council had been investigating Mr Patel for the offences following spot checks on the internet descriptions of the products he was selling.
Following test purchases they discovered the storage capacity of the devices was far less than they were advertised as being.
Some products were advertised as having 64GB but were in fact only 2.9GB.
Lionel Barnard, West Sussex County Council’s Cabinet Member for Residents’ Services with responsibility for Trading Standards, said: “Unfortunately this type of internet crime is on the rise but consumers have as many rights when it comes to online shopping as they do if they walked into a shop and purchased this type of product off a shelf.
“Our officers have a responsibility to protect consumers as well as support honest businesses that are trading within the law.
“We take the matter very seriously. Mr Patel moved from his address in Crawley to an address in Essex during the investigation and this shows that we are willing to go outside of our own borders to bring the perpetrators of these types of crimes to justice.”